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  • Writer's picturePhilip Niño Tan-Gatue

Can Acupuncture Cure Gallstones? – A Case

“Doc, can acupuncture cure gallstones? I’m afraid of surgery.”

This is certainly a question most often popped to me, especially in the Philippine General Hospital Traditional and Integrative Medicine Clinic.  I would thus like to present a case that may give an answer.

Last October, a fifty-six year old lady consulted our clinic for gall bladder stones.  I initially wanted to prescribe herbs but the patient was not amenable to that.  I decided to try to duplicate the effects of herbs with acupuncture using the principles of clearing Damp Heat and moving Liver Qi.

March 12, 2013 Ultrasound of Gall Stone Patient

March 12, 2013 Ultrasound of Gall Stone Patient

We noted that the patient was diagnosed with a gall bladder stone measuring approximately 2.14 centimeters at it’s widest length.  The patient had also reported resorting to various gallbladder flushes but had stopped a few weeks prior to first consult.

I then asked the patient for a then-current ultrasound, just to document the gallstone size before start of treatment.

October 29, 2013 ultrasound report.

October 29, 2013 ultrasound report.

This is the October result.  The ultrasound showed a gallstone 2.3 cm in length.

I had asked the patient to repeat the ultrasound this January, 2014.  My purpose was to assess the efficacy of the acupuncture.


Ultrasound report dated January 23, 2014

According to this report, the stone apparently shrunk in size by about 0.8 cm in a matter of three months.

Of course, it is just one case.

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