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The history of Wichita’s Riordan Clinic

  • The Wichita Eagle
  • Published Tuesday, Dec. 25, 2012, at 10:05 p.m.
  • Updated Tuesday, Dec. 25, 2012, at 10:25 p.m.

The Riordan Clinic, which focuses on nutritional medicine, was founded in 1975 as the Center for the Improvement of Human Functioning International Inc.

It was a venture funded by Olive W. Garvey and under the leadership of Hugh Riordan, a medical doctor who practiced psychiatry.

Riordan originally focused on treating mentally ill patients through nutritional medicine.

“He had thought there’s got to be more to psychiatry than just putting patients on a whole lot of medications. There must be some imbalance giving rise to their mental illness,” said physician Ron Hunninghake, Riordan’s chief medical officer.

Olive Garvey was married to Ray Garvey, a real estate mogul. She took over her husband’s business after his death in 1959. The initial investment by Garvey was $100,000 over three years for a lab to study nutrients in the blood, Riordan said.

Riordan remained at the helm until his death in 2005.

In 2010, the center’s name was changed to the Riordan Clinic.

Its current facility was built in 1984 as a series of geodesic domes that are also connected underground. The seven 45-foot domes form a circle around a larger dome in the middle.

There is also a 39-foot-tall pyramid on the campus that was originally used for research, according to the clinic’s website.

Riordan’s research also focused on trying to treat patients with cancer with vitamin C.

The clinic has increased its research over the past few years as well, including the study of adult stem cells.

While the clinic does not harvest stem cells, Brian Riordan said, it looks at adult stem cells that are found throughout the body and how to promote reserves of those cells to fight and prevent disease.

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