c u p u n c t u r e - m e n u
is an ancient system of healing developed over thousands of years
as part of the traditional medicine of China, Japan and other Eastern
countries. Acupuncture's origins lie in China and date back to over
5,000 years ago; today there are over 3,000,000 practitioners worldwide.
The majority of these 3,000,000 practitioners practice in the East;
however, during the last half of the 20th century the number of
persons studying acupuncture in the West has been steadily growing.
practice of acupuncture began with the discovery that the
stimulation of specific areas on the skin affects the functioning
of certain organs of the body.
has evolved into a system of medicine that restores and maintains
health by the insertion of fine needles into acupuncture points
just beneath the body surface. These points are in very specific
locations and lie on channels of energy.
Moxibustion, the warming of acupuncture points through the
use of smoldering herbs, is often used as a supplement and
the needles may also be stimulated using a small electric
needle being inserted on the hand of the patient at point
LI3: SAN JIAN
Ophthalmalgia, lower toothache, sore throat, trigeminal neuralgia,
redness and swelling of fingers and back of hand.
is based on the belief that health is determined by a balanced
flow of Qi, also referred to as "Chi." Qi is circulated
through the blood stream via fourteen energy ducts called
meridians. Each one of these pathways or channels through
which Qi flows is linked to an internal organ system. There
are over 1,000 acupoints within the meridian system that can
be stimulated to enhance the flow of Qi. Acupuncture diagnoses
illness by seeking blockages in the body's meridians.
needles are inserted into the acupoints, which are located
just beneath the epidermis. In theory, inserting these needles
helps correct the flow of energy within the body and thus
relieves pain and restores health.
placed on the face, acupuncture points promote sinus drainage and
open up nasal passages. Most patients of acupuncture will need several
sessions, which cost about $75 to $100 per session. Acupuncture practitioners
work in hospitals, rehabilitation centers, and private offices. Acupuncture
needles are usually inserted to a depth of about a quarter of an inch
into the skin. The therapist gently twists or twirls them for up to
10 minutes, leaving them in five to 20 minutes longer; or stimulates
them with a weak electrical current; or heats them with a burning
herb such as mugwort (see moxibustion).
Auriculotherapy (Ear Acupuncture):
the earliest use of ear acupuncture dates back to ancient China,
auriculotherapy did not develop until the 1950's in France when
Paul Nogier,M.D., discovered that the placement of tiny pins on
the external part of the ear, specifically the auricle, could stimulate
the immune system to restore health to the many parts of the body
(not just the ear). These needles have the effect of rebalancing
the flow of energy and affecting acupuncture points everywhere on
the body. Shortly thereafter, he devised a list of thirty auricular
points that could neurologically affect different layers of skin
tissue. He captivated the Chinese peoples' intellect so much so
that he was proclaimed the "father of modern ear acupuncture" in
reflex points on the ear are often stimulated electrically, or by
lasers, magnets, or acupressure (ear massage). The ear is a very
suitable location for acupuncture needles to be placed because of
its strong connection to the central nervous system and because
several meridians run right through the ear.
is popular in drug treatment/rehabilitation programs because it
helps patients deal with the problem of withdrawal. It is used in
methadone programs, and to help drug addicts (especially cocaine
addicts), alcoholics, and cigarette smokers break the habit. Its
main benefits, however, are its abilities to alleviate pain and
to cure dyslexia.
ear acupuncture has blossomed in China and Japan, it has been slow
to catch on in the U.S.A. Virtually every week new research studies
are being made public in Asia, solidifying Dr. Nogier's findings
and adding more information to the discipline. Yet, despite the
growing popularity of Acupuncture in America, auriculotherapy has
failed to gain notoriety. Perhaps the declaration by the World Health
Organization in 1989 that auriculotherapy is a viable medical therapy
will help gain followers in North America.
and other headaches
neuralgia and other face pains
palsy (face paralysis)
Phantom limb pain
Paralysis of leg or arm persisting after a stroke (cerebral
MUSCULO - SKELETAL
and low back pains
joints of rheumatoid
of knees, or hips or other joints
Acute sports injuries
Painful prominent scars
Preparation for childbirth
or excessive menstruation
or bagginess of face
other skin disorders
Intermittent claudication (pain on walking)
(especially in the elderly)
Early prostate enlargement
or other bowel inflammations
Persisting weakness after a severe illness
(especially after an illness)
are used in the acupuncture technique known as moxibustion.
in the West, acupuncture has been misleadingly publicized as being
helpful in only specific conditions, such as the relief of pain.
It is, in fact extremely effective in a wide variety of conditions
through its power to stimulate the mind's and body's own healing
western medicine has become less skeptical of the benefits of this
ancient Chinese holistic therapy in recent years. More and more
doctors are acknowledging its effectiveness in treating a variety
of chronic conditions (see Common Cures), despite their lack of
knowledge about how it actually works.
This acupuncture case history occurred about 20 years ago at the University
of Shanghai. A 28-year-old woman was preparing for open-heart surfery
when she was placed on the operating table, wide awake and smiling.
The woman's only "anesthetic," as the surgeon proceeded to open her
chest, was an open acupuncture needle in her right earlobe that was
connected to an electrical source. The woman never flinched. There
was no mask on her face, no intravenous needle in her arm. This account
proves the effectiveness of acupuncture in pain relief.
Medicine: The Definitive Guide; Compiled by the Burton Goldberg
Group; Future Medicine Publishing, Inc.; Puyallup, Washington; copyright
Medical Acupuncture Society. "History of Acupuncutre"
Internet 1996 (Jun. 1998) <http://www.ozacupuncture.com/history.htm>.
Journal. "Interactive Acupuncture Chart" Internet.
1998. (Jun. 1998). Once you find the acupoint you want on the virtual
body, click on it, and it's location, indication, and name are displayed.
Foundation for Traditional Chinese Medicine. "What is Acupuncture"
Internet. 1995 (Jun. 1998) <http://www.demon.co.uk/acupuncture/what.htm>.
Acupuncture College 2230 Fifth Avenue San Diego, CA 92101 (619)
PARADE Magazine; Sunday, August 16, 1998; article entitled
"Acupuncture Goes Mainstream (Almost)," by Isadore Rosenfeld, M.D.