What Makes a Great Acupuncture Treatment

The process of treating back pain with acupuncture, or any pain for that matter, is complex.  As an acupuncturist, we have many factors to consider in the treatment.

Important factors include:

  • What acupuncture points to use
  • Length of the acupuncture treatment
  • Comfortable positioning
  • Electro-acupuncture
  • Cupping

1. How to choose acupuncture points:

Acupuncture points can be chosen based on location of the pain, type of the pain, and the underlying imbalances causes the pain.  Some pain, such as pain from sciatica, is best relieved by acupuncture locally in the lower back, around the sacrum, and throughout the course of … Read More

How to Choose Acupuncture Points?

Patients are always curious how acupuncturists choose the correct acupuncture points.

The basic idea with acupuncture is to correct the underlying imbalance in the body.  By correcting the imbalances we stimulate the body to heal itself.

As an acupuncturist, I will determine the imbalance through the intake and examination.  For example, if someone is coming in for a migraine headache which is caused by a lack of circulation  of the energy, what we call qi stagnation, we’ll choose points to move the qi.  A common combination for moving the qi is Liv 3 and LI 4.

Evolving Acupuncture

I find … Read More

The Body Acupuncture

Acupuncture can target chronic pain in any location of the body.  Sometimes, an acupuncturist will put needles in the place of the pain.  But other times an acupuncturist will place needles far away from the location, such as in acupuncture points on the legs and feet for chronic headaches.

The primary way acupuncturists can focus the treatment for chronic pain in specific places because of the acupuncture channels.   Acupuncture channels connect different parts of the body and run along different places in the body.  The acupuncture channels create a type of map that interconnects different regions of the body.… Read More

Another Look at the Placebo Effect

For the last 50 years, the placebo effect has been a dirty word.  Real interventions make a physiological change in the body.   Placebos do nothing but convince the patient that something is different.

Reality states otherwise.  Ted Katpchuk, an acupuncturist and Chinese medicine doctor who focuses on the placebo effect in his research, wants to change all that.

In last week’s New Yorker, an article focuses on the placebo and the scholars who think about and examine the placebo.

What is a Placebo?

One of the difficult and fundamental questions is what is a placebo?  We’ve come to believe … Read More

Acupuncture for Chronic Pain

Chronic pain is mysterious.  It can come and go.  It can get worse, or get better.  Often without explanation.

Chronic pain is also very serious.  It interferes with work, school, and relationships.  Chronic pain is the most common issue that I treat and I have helped hundreds of patients reduce and relieve their pain. 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 … Read More

What Acupuncturists observe in a tongue

Observing the tongue and taking the pulse are two of the most common diagnostic techniques in Chinese medicine.

Why look at the tongue?

Chinese medicine uses diagnostic approaches, like the tongue and the pulse, because they reflect the imbalances that are causing your health problem.

What are we looking for in the tongue?

When I am looking at the tongue, I am looking at the the color of the tongue, the size and shape of the tongue body, and the coating on top of the tongue.

If the tongue is very red, or very pale that can show there is … Read More

Acupuncture for the IVF Transfer

This is the fifth in a series about acupuncture and IVF written by Jessica Yunker, one of my associates.  Jessica is an expert in infertility, womens’ health, and acupuncture for IVF.

Acupuncturists and fertility clinics often recommend acupuncture on the day of IVF transfer. There is quite a bit of research indicating that acupuncture improves the chances of a successful transfer and pregnancy.

On the transfer day, your acupuncturist will meet with you two times – immediately before and immediately after the transfer happens at your doctor’s office. In my practice, the acupuncture / transfer schedule looks something like … Read More

How is IVF Performed?

This article is the third in a series about acupuncture and IVF was written by Jessica Yunker, my associates.  Jessica is an expert in infertility, women’s health, and acupuncture for IVF.

Most fertility clinics and fertility specialists follow a similar protocol for IVF. First, a doctor will perform blood tests and give medications that regulate the woman’s menstrual cycle and boost the number of eggs she produces each month.

Next, the doctor retrieves the eggs and combines them with sperm in the lab, making sure to select the eggs and sperm that look most healthy. In some cases, sperm … Read More