Acupuncture for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome: A Meta Analysis

Acupuncture for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome Chronic Fatigue Syndrome is not just “feeling tired”.  WebMD (link) defines it as: “..a condition that makes you feel so tired that you can’t do all of your normal, daily activities. There are other symptoms too, but being very tired is the main one.” “..Your tiredness is real. It’s not “in your head.” It is your body’s reaction to a mix of factors.” You may feel exhausted all or much of the time. You may have problems sleeping. Or you

Acupuncture Effects Not Just Psychological

Acupuncture Effects – just in your mind? One of the knocks against acupuncture is that it’s effect is merely “psychological”.  The patient thinks he or she will get benefits from it, and therefore gets some form of the placebo effect and receives some therapeutic benefit.  Previous blog entries of mine have enumerated various scientific journal articles that debunk the myth of acupuncture being only placebo effect (

Real Acupuncture versus Sham – Again

The Skeptics’ Claim We will always hear skeptics harp on and on how there is supposedly no evidence for acupuncture’s effectivity.  When we give them evidence, they’ll always find a way to undermine that evidence.  The most common method I’ve seen would be for hard headed denialist to cite meta analyses to show that acupuncture on real points is seemingly no better than needling just anywhere.  Utterly ignoring the fact that Chinese medicine theory provides for the fact that

Acupuncture For Bladder Control in Spinal Cord Injury Patients

Spinal Cord Injury, Bladder and Bowel Control Spinal cord injury is truly a traumatic experience.  By traumatic I mean more than just the physical damage caused, but I also mean the added psychological burden on patients and their caregivers.  Not only must people deal with motor and sensory problems that prevent one from doing tasks that we otherwise take for granted, but we also have to realize that certain complications can truly shatter confidence and inflict a heavier cr

Biased Journalism About Acupuncture Again

A Ridiculous Headline A recent study, which I myself blogged about (Acupuncture in Complementary Cancer Care: Easing Joint Pain From Breast Cancer Treatment, 25 November 2013, link) is making it’s rounds in the mainstream media news.  The study basically says that both real and sham acupuncture has noticeable effects.  Some news outlets reported the study objectively. “Acupuncture, Real or Not, Eases Side Effects of Cancer Drugs” (New York Times) However, my eyes roll when I

Pre-Operative Acupuncture to Prevent Opioid-Induced Nausea and Vomiting

I have often mentioned to my medical students that the acupoint PC 6 Neiguan is among the acupuncture points most frequently studied in western medicine.  Here is a newer study from Korea entitled: Electroacupuncture on PC6 prevents opioid-induced nausea and vomiting after laparoscopic surgery. This is from the Chinese Journal of Integrative Medicine. Methods are as follows: One hundred and seventy-eight patients, who had received intravenous patient-controlled analgesia (PCA

Pre-Op Jitters? Acupuncture Helps!

I recall the story of a famous surgeon. He was a reputed miracle worker whose talent with the scalpel was unparalleled. Countless lives were saved under his care in the operating room. Imagine my surprise, then, when he once told my father (who then obviously told me the story later on), that when the time came for the surgeon to go under the knife, the surgeon was scared out of his wits. Irony aside, we have to acknowledge the fact that even the greatest surgeons are human

The Achilles Heel

Ever since I personally got involved in sports medicine, I’ve been getting questions about acupuncture for Achilles Tendinitis.  While the mechanisms for acupuncture treatment in muscle spasms has long been theorized, the question is asked – what about tendons? Soon-to-be-published research by Zhang et al may help shed some light on the subject. Acupuncture for chronic achilles tendnopathy: A randomized controlled study. ( The sampl

Acupuncture Improves Sleep in Postmenopausal Women

The Holy Grail in medical clinical research is the double-blind, placebo controlled study.  This is the one thing that skeptics claim acupuncture lacks.  Unfortunately for them this is not the case, as this abstract of an article published in the journal Climacteric shows: Climacteric. 2012 Sep 3. [Epub ahead of print] Acupuncture improves sleep in postmenopause in a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study. Hachul H, Garcia TK, Maciel AL, Yagihara F, Tufik S, Bitte

Scientific Proof of Five Transporting Points Selection in Acupuncture

One of the things that has always bothered me as a practitioner trained in both western medicine and Chinese medicine is how to explain some of the less savory aspects of acupuncture theory to skeptics.  Previous research done in the 70s has shown the physiological effects of inserting an acupuncture needle per se into the body.  Part of the critique however, is in point selection. Even some acupuncturists are starting to claim just inserting the needles into points chosen du

Mai Men Dong Tang for Asthma

I love it when science backs up traditional chinese medicine.  Right now I’ve put up the abstract of this study done in Taiwan but published in the journal Pediatric Allergy and Immunology. The original pubmed link: Why is this important?  This is important because people want and need alternatives to steroids.  They turn to acupuncture, which I have used to help a good number of asthma patients.  Unfortunately there are times when

Acupuncture Helps Irritable Bowel Syndrome

This abstract is taken from Note that this article does not push for acupuncture alone as the primary treatment, but as an adjunct therapy. Acupuncture for irritable bowel syndrome: primary care based pragmatic randomised controlled trial Hugh MacPherson, Helen Tilbrook, Martin J Bland, Karen Bloor, Sally Brabyn, Helen Cox, Arthur R Kang’ombe, Mei-See Man, Tracy Stuardi, David Torgerson, Ian Watt and Peter Whorwell BMC Ga