Acupuncture as Effective in Treating Back Pain

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The ability to treat painful conditions such as arthritis, joint pain, chronic pain and pain in the lower back in Walla Walla is a huge reason why people seek out acupuncture treatment. For a lot of individuals, traditional Chinese medicine and acupuncture has been a powerful part of their treatment regimen for pain. The question is will it be an effective treatment for you as well?

Pain in Traditional Chinese Medicine
From the viewpoint of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), joint pain and/or musculoskeletal pain is known as bi syndrome. In TCM terminology, bi signifies obstruction. The symptoms of the blockage will show qualities that cause you to feel hot, fixed, stabbing or achy pain. Certain people may positively react to exercise or movement while there are others who feel better after resting. A lot of joint and musculoskeletal disorders are sorted into a subcategory of bi syndrome. A correct diagnosis of the kind of bi a patient has guarantees the right choice of an herbal and acupuncture protocol to break and allay the blockage of blood and qi in the affected area.

Acupuncture and Back Pain – How it Works
Acupuncture is a medical procedure that helps to eliminate and deactivate the trigger points (parts of localized inflammation and constriction). The acupuncturist inserts the needles based on the pain patterns manifested by the patient. The use of acupuncture along with other TCM modalities facilitates healing in a two pronged way:
1. First when the stagnation, local congestion and inflammation are relieved, pain is alleviated as well.
2. Next, after the restoration of local circulation, the muscular structure, discs and tendons are nourished that bring back the body to a more mobile and pain-free state.

According to TCM, certain muscles may manifest pain patterns in parts of the body that may not be directly affected by inflammation or constriction. Licensed acupuncturists are trained in trigger point deactivation procedures and are capable of identifying these patterns. They then insert needles both in distal and nearby areas associated with the pain. This procedure enables them to tap on the meridian system of the body that will treat local pain while at the same time address deeper power currents inside the body to treat the origin of back pain.

Studies Show Acupuncture as Effective in Treating Back Pain
The Archives of Internal Medicine recently posted a study showing how effective acupuncture is in relieving back pain compared to traditional treatments. This study involved 638 subjects all having back pain. They were divided into four groups with 2 groups given acupuncture, one group given placebo acupuncture (the skin was stimulated but not pierced), and the last receiving no acupuncture at all but were given instead treated with certain conventional treatments (physical therapy or drugs).

The two groups given acupuncture and some form of it showed better and more substantial improvement in their back pain compared to the group given physical therapy and medications.

There was little difference between the results of needle acupuncture and placebo acupuncture and this created some questions as to how acupuncture really works and what is it about the therapy that brings about recovery. The study showed 60% of those given acupuncture showed marked improvement while just 39% of the usual-care group subjects manifested real improvements in their back pain.

 Key words:  Back Pain

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