Posts Tagged ‘New York City’
Jul 20, 2012
For years I tried a mix of different treatments for my acne. Sometimes they would work temporarily, but I always still had regular monthly breakouts and flare-ups during stressful times. After the first week of acupuncture treatments and herbal formulas, my skin had been clearer and smoother than it had been in years. After a few month treatment with regular acupuncture sessions and herbal formulas, my stress-related breakouts have stopped, and the hormonal breakouts that I do have are now very minimal. My circulation has also gotten better, as well as my overall level of stress. In sum, a completely wonderful experience!
Apr 8, 2012
I volunteered to write a testimonial for Joe because he has completely changed my life. Before my first acupuncture appointment a few months ago, several urologists told me that I had overactive bladder (OAB), and a urogynecologist told me that I had interstitial cystitis (IC). I was confused about the diversity of diagnoses, and I felt powerless because none of the medication that doctors prescribed helped to decrease the sense of urgency to urinate. In addition, finding out that I had OAB as a result of multiple UTI’s had been upsetting enough, but the subsequent diagnosis of IC caused intense anxiety. My diagnosis and symptoms began to consume my life, and I wondered how I would ever feel happy again. I would fall asleep almost every night thinking about the burning burning sensation in my bladder, and I would worry about not being able to sleep throughout the night. As a teacher, I found it was difficult to get through my classes without wanting or needing to go the bathroom. I was distressed about the hundreds and hundreds of dollars that I had spent on doctors and medications. I even tried another acupuncturist who was affiliated with a hospital in NYC, and I almost gave up when it didn’t help. Fortunately, I found Joe’s website and I read a testimonial written by a woman with similar symptoms who had found relief as a result of Joe’s help. When I spoke with Joe on the phone, I was immediately comforted by his calm tone, patience in navigating my numerous questions, knowledge about OAB and IC, and optimism that he could help me. After my first two visits, my symptoms improved tremendously, and I started functioning like a “normal” human being again. I saw Joe once a week for the first 12 weeks, and I now see him 3 times a month. I absolutely love going to each appointment because he is consistently compassionate and resourceful, and his approach is effective. In addition to helping me with my bladder problems, he has also helped me with allergies and colds. If you’re looking for a holistic solution to any problem, set up an appointment!
Feb 6, 2012
The art of electro-acupuncture is in the details of how one uses the therapy. An effective electro-acupuncture treatment comes from what electric stimulation machine is used, proper selection of acupuncture points, how long you use the stimulation, and the proper frequency.
In our New York City Acupuncture clinic, we use the Pantheon Research microstim machine. This is one the highest quality machines ensure a safe and effective treatment. Microstim means that the amplitude of the electric stimulation is much smaller. This is much more comfortable for the patient.
Acupuncture Point Selection
Selecting the best acupuncture points is important when using the electro-acupuncture. The acupuncture points should be chosen based upon the type of pain, the location of pain, and the muscle tightness.
This is particularly important when using acupuncture for shoulder pain. For example, if there is an acute shoulder pain with a tight knot on the corner of the shoulder blade or on the apex of the shoulder, then the leads can be placed on acupuncture points surround the area of pain.
If the spasm is very reactive to pressure, the muscle will resist too much stimulation. In that case, the leads should be placed on the acupuncture points along the effected acupuncture channel a little distance from the pain.
What is the optimal duration for electro-acupuncture?
The optimal time for electro acupuncture pain relief is 20 minutes. My preference is to perform electro acupuncture for 20 minutes. Afterwards, twirl the acupuncture needles to stimulate them and continue with 15 minutes more of regular acupuncture. This helps to get the pain relief and anti-inflammatory effects of both the electro acupuncture and regular acupuncture.
What is the best frequency for electro-acupuncture?
The lower frequencies of electo-acupuncture, such 2hz, 4 hz, or 10hz, can address both pain and inflammation. Most of the time, I use 4hz or 10hz, for most joint pain. These low frequencies can also be useful for insomnia and anxiety in some people.
Is there is chronic muscle tightness that is causing pain, the higher electro-acupuncture frequencies can sometime be effective. In my last post I wrote about electro-acupuncture for a patient with Chronic Pelvic Pain Syndrome.
Jan 31, 2012
Oct 28, 2011
Chronic pain is mysterious. It can come and go. It can get worse, or get better. Often without explanation.
Chronic pain is serious. It interferes with work, school, and relationships. Chronic pain is the most common issue that comes into my acupuncture clinic. Pain can effect almost any place in the body: headaches, back pain, shoulder pain, neck pain, knee pain, and any other location.
Acupuncture for Chronic Pain
Acupuncture is a complex therapy and works in a combination of ways to reduce pain and inflammation.
Acupuncture works to reduce pain and inflammation through regulating neural pain pathways, stimulating the release of natural pain relieves in the body, such as opioids, as well as regulating pain relieving opioid receptors.
Many studies have also shown acupuncture to have a anti-inflammatory effect, reducing the circulating inflammatory hormones in the blood, such as cortisol. Interestingly, many of the hormonal and neural effects last long after the acupuncture treatment has finished, suggesting that acupuncture has both immediate and long term regulatory effective in reducing pain.
What is the acupuncture needle doing?
We also can think about what the acupuncture needle itself is doing. When inserting a needle, the muscles near the acupuncture needle or along the acupuncture channel will often twitch. Many scientists have looked at this “twitch response” which can change the inflammatory mediators in the area of the acupuncture point. This could point to a mechanism related to local pain reduction.
Connective tissue stimulation is another possible mechanisms for pain relief that the acupuncture needle site.
Acupuncturists will twirl the needle many times during the treatment. Researchers have shown that this stimulates subcutaneous loose connective tissue. Helene Langevin, the remarkable researcher who discovered this, writes, “Fibroblasts (the cells) within the loose connective tissue respond to the mechanical stimulation with active cytoskeletal remodeling that may have important downstream effects within connective tissue.”
We do not know the specific clinical effects of the connective tissue responses. But Langevin believes these results may eventually lead to an explanation of the acupuncture channel circulation and connecting the body.
The next steps in acupuncture research will look to understand how these complex mechanisms work together for long lasting pain relief.
Napadow V, Ahn A, Longhurst J, et.al. The Status and Future of Acupuncture Mechanism Research. J Altern Complement Med. 2008 September; 14(7): 861–869.
Langevin HM, Churchill DL, Wu J. Et. al. Evidence of Connective Tissue Involvement in Acupuncture. FASEB Journal. April 10, 2002. Published Online.
National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine Website. Acupuncture for Pain. Accessed 4/30/2013.
Jul 12, 2011
Throughout my life I have struggled with acne on both my face and body. I felt like I had tried just about everything that Western medicine had to offer – accutane, light therapy, facials, antibiotics – you name it, I’ve tried it! Finally, my fiancé suggested I look into acupuncture since other methods certainly did not seem to be doing the trick. I had always been interested in trying Chinese medicine, but I was a little doubtful since it doesn’t promise the immediate results that big name pharmaceutical companies advertise. Much to my surprise, I started seeing results almost immediately – in more than just my skin. My anxiety, which has always been an issue for me, is basically nonexistent at this point and I feel calmer and more clear-headed in general. My night sweats, that I learned were tied into the food I was eating and the overall condition of my body that had produced the acne, are completely gone. Throughout this process I have not only learned so much from Joe, but I have gained a deep respect for his technique and abilities. Joe is such an amazingly calming force and is extremely open-minded and intelligent – I can’t recommend a better acupuncturist!
Jul 5, 2011
It is officially hot here in New York City.
Chinese medicine has many remedies to cool down and reduce the risk of heat conditions in the summer. One of my favorite secrets is a cooling herbal tea made of chrysanthemum flowers and gou ji berries.
The Summertime Eight Treasures tea is also another way to cool the body down. This tea has a couple more herbs like yi yi ren and bai zhu to drain dampness as well. Good to humid environments like NYC.
Jun 10, 2011
Mosquito bites are annoying, no doubt about it.
When travelling to a hot humid place, such as the jungles in Peru, Southern China, or even right here with my New York City acupuncture patients, mosquito bite itching can be troubling.
Herbs can he very helpful for reducing itching. One of the best and easiest herbal formulas to use for itching is called Yin Care.
Yin Care is a topical wash used for itching and inflammation of the skin. The herbs such as she chuang zi and di fu zi work to calm itch while sheng di huang and jin yin hua reduce inflammation.
Use about a dime size amount and rub on effected area.
Apr 5, 2011
April is the cruelest month, breeding
Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing
Memory and desire, stirring
Dull roots with spring rain.
T.S. Eliot’s The Wasteland
In New York City, we love April. It is the time to come out of winter hibernation and breathe the fresh air again. But as T.S. Eliot writes, April is also has the potential to be cruel.
Chinese medicine physicians over the generations caution about the cruelty of April. The weather changes frequently so it is a time which we can easily get sick. The warmer weather also creates an environment for heat which builds up in the body over the winter to come out in spring. This can lead to allergies and spring rashes like pityriasis rosea.
The body adjusts to each season in order to keep you from getting a cold. According to Chinese medicine, the qi, the body’s energy, is what protects you from getting sick. Frequent weather changes tax your qi and make you more susceptible to getting a cold. So it is important to boost your qi with acupuncture and acupressure this time of year.
Spring Rashes and Allergies
Heat is a common cause of skin conditions. In the spring, the sudden temperature change can cause heat in the body to manifest on the skin as a rash. Pityriasis rosea is a good example of this because it is a sudden rash the commonly occurs in the spring. The runny nose, sneezing, sinus congestion, and itchy eyes of seasonal allergies are also a manifestation of the heat inside the body pushing outwards during the change of season.
Oct 4, 2010
Here are some acupuncture points and acupuncture point combinations that help reduce the common cold. Lung 5 and Lung 7 are effective for reducing cough and chest congestion. If there is a lot of chest congestion, Lung 1 may be helpful, along with cupping on the back. LI 4 helps to relieve sinus headaches. It can be combined with Urinary bladder 7 and Yin Tang, which is on the center of the forehead. Spleen 9 also can help relieve sinus headaches. For sore throats, Lung 7 and Kidney 6 are very helpful. St 36 helps to boost overall energy levels. Stomach 40 can help with post nasal drips and phlegm in the throat. The combination of Gall bladder 41 and San Jiao 5 can help to fight off an early cold that is starting to become more severe. San Jiao 5 can also help sore throat.
In my next post I will write about Chinese herbs and herbal formulas that can help fight and prevent the common cold.