Click the link above for the full story or click here to watch the video broadcast.
Nielsen said that after a series of treatments, women experiencing menopausal symptoms generally "start to feel much more relaxed -- the anxiety is also associated with hot flashes." By the second or third treatment, she said, patients come in and say, "Actually I'm not hot flashing during the day anymore, maybe a couple at night, and then that starts to decline as well." Menopause is the latest use of the 2,000 year-old Chinese tradition -- it's already being used to reduce symptoms related to arthritis, back, neck, knee and shoulder pain, and anxiety. At the Mayo Clinic, acupuncture is part of the standard of care for all patients in the Joint Replacement Center. Doctors there are also involved in their own trial of the benefits of acupuncture for hot flashes. Researchers suggest the reason why acupuncture may work for women suffering from hot flashes is that the treatment is able to boost the production of endorphins and that could help stabilize body temperature.
Study Maps Effects of
Acupuncture on the Brain
Important new research about the effects of acupuncture on the brain may provide an understanding of the complex mechanisms of acupuncture and could lead to a wider acceptability of the treatment. The study, by researchers at the University of York and the Hull York Medical School published in Brain Research, indicates that acupuncture has a significant effect on specific neural structures. When a patient receives acupuncture treatment, a sensation called deqi can be obtained; scientific analysis shows that this deactivates areas within the brain that are associated with the processing of pain. Dr Hugh MacPherson, of the Complementary Medicine Research Group in the University's Department of Health Sciences, says: "These results provide objective scientific evidence that acupuncture has specific effects within the brain which hopefully will lead to a better understanding of how acupuncture works." Neuroscientist Dr Aziz Asghar, of the York Neuroimaging Centre and the Hull York Medical School, adds: "The results are fascinating. Whether such brain deactivations constitute a mechanism which underlies or contributes to the therapeutic effect of acupuncture is an intriguing possibility which requires further research."
Acupuncture for Chronic Low Back Pain:A Randomized Placebo Controlled Study With Long-Term Follow-Up
The authors found a long-term pain-relieving effect of needle acupuncture compared with true placebo in some patients with chronic nociceptive low back pain. At the 1-month independent assessment, 16 of 34 patients in the acupuncture groups and 2 of 16 patients in the placebo group showed improvement (p <0.05). At the 6-month follow-up assessment, 14 of 34 patients in the acupuncture groups and 2 of 16 patients in the placebo group showed improvement (p <0.05). A significant decrease in pain intensities occurred at 1 and 3 months in the acupuncture groups compared with the placebo group. There was a significant improvement in return to work, quality of sleep, and analgesic intake in subjects treated with acupuncture.
Influence of Acupuncture on the Pregnancy Rate in Patients Who Undergo Assisted Reproduction Therapy
Acupuncture seems to be a useful tool for improving pregnancy rate after ART. Clinical pregnancies were documented in 34 of 80 patients (42.5%) in the acupuncture group, whereas pregnancy rate was only 26.3% (21 out of 80 patients) in the control group.
Click here to read the full article in Men's Journal about Acupuncture in the NFL
Throughout professional sports, from football to baseball to tennis and track and field, a growing number of players are turning to acupuncture to treat injuries, cure musculoskeletal imbalances, relieve muscle tightness and pain, and alleviate dozens of non-sports- related health problems
Frequent stimulation of specific auricular acupuncture points is an effective method of appetite suppression which leads to weight loss....95% of the active group noticed suppression of appetite, whereas none of the control group noticed such a change. None of the control group lost the required 2 kg, with only 4 subjects losing any weight at all. Both the number of subjects who lost weight and the mean weight loss were significantly higher in the active group.
While he was recovering at Walter Reed Army Medical Center in Washington, his doctor suggested he add acupuncture to his treatment to help with the pain. On a recent morning, Col. Richard Niemtzow, an Air Force physician, carefully pushed a short needle into part of Smith's outer ear. The soldier flinched, saying it felt like he "got clipped by something." By the time three more of the tiny, gold alloy needles were arranged around the ear, though, the pain from his injuries began to ease. "My ribs feel numb now and I feel it a little less in my hand," Smith said, raising his injured arm. "The pain isn't as sharp. It's maybe 50 percent better."
Now the Air Force, which runs the military's only acupuncture clinic, is training doctors to take acupuncture to the war zones of Iraq and Afghanistan. A pilot program starting in March will prepare 44 Air Force, Navy and Army doctors to use acupuncture as part of emergency care in combat and in frontline hospitals, not just on bases back home. They will learn "battlefield acupuncture," a method Niemtzow developed in 2001 that's derived from traditional ear acupuncture but uses the short needles to better fit under combat helmets so soldiers can continue their missions with the needles inserted to relieve pain. The needles are applied to five points on the outer ear. Niemtzow says most of his patients say their pain decreases within minutes. The Navy has begun a similar pilot program to train its doctors at Camp Pendleton in California. Niemtzow is chief of the acupuncture clinic at Andrews Air Force Base. He's leading the new program after training many of about 50 active duty military physicians who practice acupuncture.
Fewer narcotics means fewer side effects
Col. Arnyce Pock, medical director for the Air Force Medical Corps, said acupuncture comes without the side effects that are common after taking traditional painkillers. Acupuncture also quickly treats pain.
Bonghan Channels in Acupuncture:
Scientific evidence of
A group of Korean researchers have rediscovered threadlike microscopic anatomical structures that correspond with the layout of traditional acupuncture meridians or channels. Acupuncture channels are no longer imaginary lines, but specific anatomical structures that, until now, have not been recognized by current theories of anatomy. These channels have been found inside of blood and lymphatic vessels and they also form networks that overlay internal organs. The channels are called Bonghan channels after Kim Bonghan, a North Korean who published papers describing them in the 1960s. Although his discoveries were confirmed by the Japanese researchers Fujiwara and Yu in 1967, his work was discounted by other scientists because he never revealed his formula for the staining dye that revealed these structures. Almost 40 years later, Kim's discoveries have been confirmed by a variety of studies with rats, rabbits and pigs. Stereo-microscope photographs and images from transmission electron microscopy in the research papers show assemblies of tubular structures 30 to 100 mm wide (red blood cells are 6-8 mm in diameter).
Apparently these structures have remained undiscovered for so long because they are almost transparent and so thin that they are barely visible with low-magnification surgical microscopes. They are also easily confused with fibrin, which coagulates and obscures these structures when there is bleeding in dissected tissues. Now that they have been rediscovered, researchers are investigating their composition and function. The tubular structures that make up Bonghan channels contain a flowing liquid that includes abundant hyaluronic acid, a substance that cushions and lubricates the joints, eyes, skin and even heart valves. Also visible in the photographs are small granules of DNA or microcells about 1-2 mm in diameter that contain chromosomal material highly reactive to stem-cell antibody stains. When these cells were isolated and then induced to differentiate, they grew into cells of all three germ layers. These may be our body's natural source of pluripotent adult stem cells, with the potential to develop into any cell in the body.
Bonghan channels are also being compared to fiber-optic channels in the body. These channels may be able to carry an extremely high density of information far beyond the limited, one-way signals of the nervous system or the diffusive information carried by hormones in the blood stream. A 2004 paper describes how biophotons, produced by animal tissues, may be emitted by DNA molecules to produce a laser-like coherent light capable of carrying an enormous volume of information through the Bonghan channels. The idea that acupuncture channels conduct light has already been substantiated by Russian research published as early as 1991. They found that the light-conducting ability of the human body exists only along the meridians, and can enter and exit only along the acupuncture points. This finding has been confirmed by a 1992 study in the Journal of Traditional Chinese Medicine and a 2005 study in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine where moxibustion and infrared thermography were used to trace meridian pathways.
In a study of 160 women, published April 2002 in the reproductive journal Fertility and Sterility, a group of German researchers found that adding acupuncture to the traditional IVF treatment protocols substantially increased pregnancy success....But increasing the odds of IVF is not the only way acupuncture can help. Chang says it can also work to stimulate egg production in women who can't -- or don't want to -- use fertility medications to help them get pregnant. When you compare the pregnancy rates for an egg producing drug such as Clomid to acupuncture alone, the rates are equal...
All 10 acupuncture participants (100%) reported a decrease in appetite, compared with only 1 in 10 controls (10%). Furthermore, total weight loss in the acupuncture group was nearly 3 times greater than in the control group.
Click Here For More Research Studies
on Acupuncture and Weight Loss
Ashley Will, LAc
Acupuncture & Herbal Healing Center
located at Physicians For Women
4660 Kenmore Ave, Ste 1100
Alexandria, VA 22304