How does the National Institute of Health view Traditional Chinese Medicine?

According to the 2007 National Health Interview Survey, an estimated 3.1 million U.S. adults had used acupuncture in the previous year.

Learn more from the National Institute of Health’s backgrounder on Traditional Chinese Medicine.

What should I expect during my first visit?

During your first office visit, the practitioner may ask you at length about your health condition, lifestyle, and behavior. The practitioner will want to obtain a complete picture of your treatment needs and behaviors that may contribute to your condition. Inform the acupuncturist about all treatments or medications you are taking and all medical conditions you have. The practitioner will also use standard traditional Chinese medical diagnostic techniques such as taking the pulses and checking the tongue.

Depending on the problem being treated and your prior condition, you may experience a wide range of sensations the first time you have acupuncture. Since the treatment goal is the restoration and balance of the body’s Qi, some patients will experience a burst of energy while others may feel relaxed or even tired. Many people experience a sense of calm and well being. Occasionally a patient may feel euphoric or lightheaded, especially after the first treatment.

Small, localized bruises from minor bleeding under the skin are infrequent, but do happen. These are no cause for alarm, and despite the cosmetic inconvenience, they actually provide a kind of bonus treatment. The re-absorption of the blood continues the stimulation of the acupuncture point even without the presence of the needle.

How does acupuncture feel?

Prior to their first treatment, many people do not believe that acupuncture can be painless. Different sensations such as soreness, numbness, distending, warmth and pressure may be felt, but the energetic sensation differs from pain. People often comment that the feeling is unfamiliar but pleasant and relaxing. We find that most of our patients are so relaxed during a session that they may even nap.

If you have a real fear of needles, discuss it with your practitioner. An appropriate treatment strategy can always be agreed upon.

Is acupuncture safe?

Yes, we use disposable single use sterile needles. In addition, our experienced practitioners know exactly where to insert the needles, avoiding sensitive areas.

How many sessions do I need?

As each person is unique, the number of treatments needed will vary. Among the determining factors are the type of condition being treated, whether the condition is chronic or acute, and the over health of the individual. Again, you should discuss your treatment program with your practitioner.

How often should I receive acupuncture treatment?

The number and frequency of acupuncture treatments depend entirely on the physical condition of each individual. A treatment plan will be created during the first initial visit to our clinic.

What is the success rate of acupuncture used to treat infertility?

Patients at Chinese Medical Center experience success rates which are above average. However, success rates vary and are influenced by many factors, including patient adherence to the treatment program, age of the patient, and the specific medical condition of the patient. Studies show that patients undergoing concurrent treatments, such as IVF in combination with acupuncture, will significantly elevate their rate of conception. However, the patient is advised to bear in mind that traditional Western medical treatments alone, such as IVF, achieve a modest success rate at best. While some clinics claim success rate as high as 80%, we do not wish to instill false hopes. Each patient must be considered on an individual basis and treated as such. In addition, carrying a healthy baby to term – rather than simply conceiving – is the goal at Chinese Medical Center.

Is acupuncture more effective than herbs in treating infertility?

The causes of infertility vary. Some causes respond well to acupuncture, others to herbal treatment, while still others require both acupuncture and herbs. At Chinese Medical Center, we believe that all acupuncturists should have extensive experience with herbs, herbal formulas and the prescription of herbs. Understanding who can benefit from herbs demonstrates a deep understanding of both acupuncture and herbs. Practitioners should know when and when not to prescribe herbs.

Can acupuncture be effective when other treatments have failed?

Yes! Each medicine system has its own areas of greatest effectiveness. Acupuncture excels in those areas in which conventional medicine comes up short. Chronic disease, fertility issues, pain control, and stress related disorders are just a few of the areas in which acupuncture and Chinese medicine are effective.


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