Acupuncture and Chronic Pain

Powerful Essays
What is Acupuncture?

Acupuncture is an ancient art of healing that dates back to at least 2,500 years. It has been widely practiced in China and many other Asian countries. Only recently has acupuncture made its way into the western world. Acupuncture accentuates on the natural healing of the body. It involves stimulating acupuncture points by the insertion of very fine, solid, metallic needles.

Acupuncture is gaining popularity as numerous claims are being made to its validity and effectiveness. Although many studies and experiments regarding acupuncture have been done, the scientific basis of the principles of this alternative approach still remains unclear (

Principles of Acupuncture

The basic principles of acupuncture involve terms such as Yin and Yang, Qi, Meridians and Organ Systems. Acupuncture believes in a continuum of energy that flows in the body between two opposite poles, Yin and Yang. The balance of these two poles constitutes health in the body. Although Yin and Yang are opposites, they are related and inseparable from each other. In other words, they are not absolute terms. Yin contains Yang and Yang contains Yin; they are interdependent and interchangeable. A disturbance in the balance of the Yin and the Yang in the body results in sickness, injury, or illness (

Qi (pronounced "chee") serves as the life force that circulates throughout the body. It is accumulated, balanced, and enhanced by the dietary intake and air. Disorder and sickness are caused by the unbalanced, obstructed and irregular flow of Qi. Meridians are simply channels that carry Qi throughout the body. They are composed of acupunctur...

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...puncture and Chronic Pain: A Criteria-Based Meta-Analysis. Journal of Clinical Epidemiology, 43(11), 1191-1199.

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Ulett, G. A., Han, J. S., Han, S. (1998). Traditional and Evidence-Based Acupuncture: History, Mechanisms, and Present Status. Southern Medical Journal, 91(12), 1115-1120.

Wu, M. T., Hsieh, J. C., Xiong, J., Yang, C. F., Pan, H. B., Chen, Y. C., Tsai, G., Rosen, B. R., & Kwong K. K. (1999). Central nervous pathway for acupuncture stimulation: localization of processing with functional MR imaging of the brain—preliminary experience. Radiology, 212(1), 133-141.

Yamauchi, N. (2006). The Results of Therapeutic Acupuncture in a Pain Clinic. Canadian Anaesthetists Society Journal, 28(5-6), 311-316.
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