Acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine has been shown in numerous studies to be effective for pain relief. I specialize in muscular-skeletal disorders, joint pain, and spinal disorders such as disc herniations. You do not need to live with pain. Acupuncture can help decrease your pain levels today. Discover (link to the following page that should contain the text provided below)
Trigger Point Acupuncture
Trigger point acupuncture and myofascial release treatment is a specialized form of acupuncture based on the work of Dr. Janet Travel, M.D. Trigger points are command points in muscles that can control the tightness of the muscle and cause referral pathways of pain along the dermatome. Acupuncture points often correlate to trigger points along the body. When a trigger point is released through acupuncture the muscle fibers change direction and moved out of the shortened and whirled pattern which creates a knot in the muscle and elongate and regain elasticity. Trigger point acupuncture is excellent to help resolve muscular skeletal pain. Trigger point acupuncture is helpful to improve athletic performance and prevent injurie for athletes and weekend warriors.
Muscle and Joint Pain
In Chinese Medical Theory the saying goes like this, “Tong zhi tong, bu tong zhi tong.” This principle translated essentially means: where there is blockage, there is pain, where there is no blockage there is no pain. Pain in Chinese Medicine is a blockage of energy (qi) and blood in the muscles, meridians, and joints. When you injure yourself the blockage of blood is obvious, you get a bruise. The blockage of energy is the tightness and soreness you feel in the muscle or joint. Acupuncture works to free the blockage of qi and blood by inserting needles into specific points along the area of pain and injury, as well as the corresponding meridians. By inserting needles into the muscle, which is injured, the muscle is stimulated to release its contraction and relaxation is felt almost immediately. By inserting needles in acupoints along the meridian which corresponds to the joint or muscle in the entire area is freed of blockage and the pain is reduced even further. Bio-medically pain can be caused by a number of factors: traumatic injury, repetitive motion injury, joint degeneration, stress, anxiety, depression, a build up of toxins in the muscles and joints, and inflammatory responses. Together we will locate the cause of your pain, the affected area and make it better. As well as acupuncture, Chinese herbal medicine taken internally or used topically can also be helpful to reduce pain. Stretches will also be shown and given to each patient to help put the power of healing back into the patients hands and expand their understanding of their physical body. Most patients will feel some reduction in pain after the first treatment. More recent injuries and acute pain take a shorter time to heal depending upon the severity of injury, generally 2-5 treatments. Patients with more chronic pain often receive a great deal of relief after the first visit, but require more regular follow-up visits to eliminate the pain completely, generally 5-10 treatments. Patients with various kinds of arthritis and disc degeneration will require long term care in order to manage their pain, generally an initial round of 10 weekly treatments and then bi-weekly to monthly sessions.
Disc Herniation and degeneration, Scoliosis, and other spinal disorders:
Spinal disc degeneration and herniation is an increasing phenomenon in modern medicine due to increased muscle tightness creating compression and pressure on the spine. Acupuncture is incredibly successful not only in eliminating the pain, numbness, and tingling that can be caused by herniation and degeneration, but also by strengthening the spine to help reverse degeneration and help eliminate herniation. A disc herniation is characterized by the protrusion of the spongy central nucleus of the vertebral body through a defect of the outer fibrosis of the disc. This protrusion may trap nerve roots of the spine and cause pain, numbness, tingling, or a burning sensation, decreased function of a limb, and nerve root dysfunction.
Disc Degeneration, the dehydration of vertebral discs, occurs as a process of age, and can also impinge nerve roots causing pain. During this process the ligaments and bones of the spine become less mobile and flexible. An MRI is required to diagnose herniation or degeneration. A thorough examination will be performed to determine the cause of pain, whether the pain is due to nerve root impingement or due to muscle tightness because of the spinal instability created by the herniation or degeneration. It is recommended if you have not gotten an MRI to see a neurologist and have one performed; however, it is not required that you do this prior to our first visit as I will be able to determine and treat the discomfort without an MRI. If you have already had an MRI, it is beneficial to bring the report to my office for analysis. Acupuncture is excellent to eliminate nerve pain and help release the compressed nerve. Because the herniation or degeneration creates some spinal instability the muscles around the area will tighten. Acupuncture will relax your muscles and further ease your pain and tension. Generally, in the first few visits you will feel significant pain reduction, after 10 visits your symptoms should be eliminated almost completely.
Severe nerve impingement treatment may require more extensive weekly visits. It is recommended that because herniation and degeneration are chronic conditions you return for bi-weekly or monthly follow-up sessions. Stretches and nutritional supplements will also be recommended. Surgical treatment is only recommended if there is severe loss of leg function and mobility, or if there is urine or bowel incontinence. Often even if there is leg function difficulty, acupuncture can reduce the inflammation and nerve impingement significantly enough to restore function and mobility. Often patients who have surgery have more discomfort after surgery or still have some pain, because of muscle tightness, which acupuncture can help reduce.
Scoliosis is an abnormal side to side curvature or twisting of the spine greater then 10 degrees. Often there is some pain and muscle tightness due to compensation for the twist or curvature of the spine. Acupuncture is excellent at easing the pain and muscle tension associated with scoliosis. Through a special technique of using moxibustion and acupuncture combined, I can help to straighten the spine and reduce the degree of curvature.
The Agency for Health Care Policy and Research. AHCPR Publication: Acute Low Back Problems in Adults: Assessment and Treatment. Publication No. 95-0643. December 1994
Arthritis is a painful condition that can afflict the joints of our body. Acupuncture helps to reduce pain and inflammation by increasing blood flow, relaxing the muscles that go to the joints, increase range of motion of the joint, and reducing future degeneration.
Osteoarthritis is a condition that causes swelling and pain in the joint as a result of the breakdown of cartilage (the protective coating within the joint). As the amount of cartilage which cushions the bone on bone interaction reduces the bones come into greater contact with each other causing pain, inflammation, swelling, muscle tightness, and reduced mobility. Acupuncture helps to improve blood flow to the joint, reduce muscle tightness, decrease inflammation, and improve mobility. Acupuncture can also be effective as an adjunct pre and post surgery. If your arthritis is advanced and requires joint replacement acupuncture is excellent to help ensure a smooth and easier recovery. It is important to have at least five sessions before the surgery to help relax muscle tightness and improve blood flow to the joint. This will help significantly increase healing time and speed recovery. After the surgery follow up treatments are important to help regain full, integrated mobility of the joint.
Rheumatoid Arthritis is an autoimmune disorder where the body’s immune system attacks the joints. This causes pain, stiffness, swelling and reduced mobility of the joint. Acupuncture helps to moderate the body’s immune system response and help to prevent it from attacking the joints. Acupuncture also helps to reduce the pain, stiffness, and swelling of the joints and relax the muscles and improve mobility.
Arthritis is a degenerative condition that requires continued follow up and maintenance. The sooner you begin treatment the faster you will begin to feel less pain, reduce further joint degeneration, increase the quality of your life.