The World Health Organization (WHO) has compiled a list of many conditions that have been shown to be improved with Acupuncture. That list can be found here.
The National Institute of Health (NIH) has compiled a website with information about studies done in the U.S. that have found acupuncture to be effective. That can be found here.
We see acupuncture effective for many conditions including: Allergies, Acne, Low back pain, Neck pain, Sciatica, Tennis elbow, Knee pain, Shoulder pain, Arthritis, Sprains & Strains, Facial pain, TMJ/TMD, Headache, Migraines, Dental pain, Acute and chronic gastritis, Rheumatoid arthritis, Labor Preparation, Morning sickness, Nausea and vomiting, Postoperative pain, Stroke Sequelae, Essential hypertension, Primary hypotension, Radiation/chemo reactions, Feelings of Depression and/or Anxiety, Dysmenorrhea/Painful Periods, Poly Cystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS), Peptic ulcers, Insomnia, Symptoms of stress and much more. See the bottom of this page for a partial list of research studies by condition. Further research can be found on Pubmed.
What Can Acupuncture Treat?
You are likely to feel some sensation with acupuncture, but it should not be painful. Initial insertion is like a small pinch that should fade into tingling, heaviness, a light ache or nothing. If it doesn't, let us know and we'll change it. Most clients are comfortable enough to fall asleep while the needles are retained.
Does Acupuncture Hurt?
A treatment with a licensed practitioner (L.Ac) using sterile single use needles is very safe. Common side effects may include minor bruising or bleeding at the needling site but usually include a feeling of relaxation, better sleep and an increased ability to handle stress. Read the "Acupuncture Consent to Treat" form on your intake and ask a practitioner about specific concerns. Acupuncture has fewer side effects than NSAIDS.
Is it safe? Are there side effects?
Some issues require just one treatment while others will require a series in succession. It depends on the duration and severity of the ailment as well as the state of your health in general and life circumstances. Research shows that most people feel the greatest benefit after five treatments.
How many treatments will I need?
The placebo effect is not specific to acupuncture and is very interesting! It has been shown that if you believe something works, it works better! However, you do not need to believe that acupuncture works in order for it to work for you. Many people come to their first treatment skeptical. It's ok if you do, too. The placebo effect is in effect in all kinds of medicine, including prescription pills. Studies have shown that real acupuncture is more effective than sham or fake acupuncture.
What about the placebo effect?
What about the placebo effect?
For many people suffering from many health conditions, yes. Acupuncture does work. There are a number of things that may make acupuncture successful for you including the number and frequency of treatments you receive as well as how you can limit things that may be contributing to the issue you are having. Since unlike most other medical intervention, acupuncture is entirely customized, it is recommended you speak with your practitioner about what to expect for you and your health goals.
Does it work?
Acupuncture is part of Traditional Chinese Medicine and easily described in these terms. It regulates the flow of Qi, Yin and Yang in your Channels and Organs. However describing this in the terms of Western medicine is more difficult. There are several theories including the Gate Theory, the Two-Gate Control Theory, the Endorphin theory and many more. For now as well as the last two thousand years, we'll just have to see how acupuncture works for you!
How does Acupuncture work?
Research on Acupuncture by Condition
(This is not a complete list of treatable conditions but a resource of clinical studies showing the effects of acupuncture for specific conditions in trial settings. Talk to a practitioner to see if acupuncture could be helpful for you.)
Knee Pain/Hip Pain/Osteoarthritis
Low Back Pain
Conjunctive Cancer Care
Phase 2 results from Radiation Therapy Oncology Group Study 0537: A phase 2/3 study comparing acupuncture-like transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation versus pilocarpine in treating early radiation-induced xerostomia.
Poly Cystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS)