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Does Acupuncture Help Arthritis Pain

What Types Of Pain Does Acupuncture Help

Arthritis Information & Relief : Acupuncture & Arthritis Pain

When it comes to Traditional Chinese Medicine , acupuncture is a treatment familiar to many seeking drug-free pain relief. This alternative medicine involves inserting thin needles into the skin, subcutaneous tissue, and muscle at any of 2,000 specific points on the body. It is believed that these points are connected by 12 meridians that conduct energy, or Qi, between the surface of the body and the internal organs. The theory behind the approach is that blockages and imbalances can cause illness and pain while acupuncture seeks to maintain balance and restore health. Acupunture is also often combined with heat, pressure, or electrical stimulation.

Typically, those undergoing acupuncture are asked to lie still as anywhere from 5 to 20 needles are inserted and left in place for 10 to 20 minutes. Acupuncture is relatively cost-effective compared to other therapies and the risk of adverse effects is generally considered much lower than pharmacological treatments. This slideshow shows 5 types of chronic pain that acupuncture may help to relieve.

– Reported by Melissa Summers

Causes Of Chronic Lower Back Pain

Pain is thought about persistent as soon as it lasts for more than 3 months and exceeds the bodys all-natural recovery procedure. Persistent pain in the low back commonly includes a disc issue, a joint trouble, and/or an aggravated nerve root. Common causes consist of:

Back herniated disc. The jelly-like center of a lumbar disc can appear the difficult outer layer and aggravate a nearby nerve origin. The herniated portion of the disc has plenty of healthy proteins that create swelling when they reach a nerve root, as well as swelling, along with nerve compression, cause nerve origin pain. The disc wall is additionally highly supplied by nerve fibers, and also a tear via the wall can create extreme pain.

Degenerative disc illness. At birth, intervertebral discs teem with water and at their healthiest. As people age in time, discs shed hydration and also wear down. As the disc sheds hydration, it can not resist pressures too, and transfers pressure to the disc wall surface that might create tears and also trigger pain or weakening that can cause a herniation. The disc can also fall down and contribute to stenosis.

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Can Acupuncture Treat Rheumatoid Arthritis

It cant change the course of the disease, but some research suggests acupuncture, as a complement to medication, may benefit some people living with RA.


Acupuncture will not stop the progression of rheumatoid arthritis or prevent joint damage, so it shouldnt be considered an alternative to medication. But that doesnt mean its useless to people living with RA. In fact, acupuncture may be a reasonable complement or addition to traditional treatment.

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Treating Hip Pain With Acupuncture

Acupuncture has been used to treat everything from stress to nausea, and also joint pain. But can it really help tough-to-treat hip pain?

If nothing youve tried to relieve hip pain has worked, and youre not ready to undergo hip surgery, there might be one more treatment option for you to investigate: acupuncture.

Acupuncture is an alternative treatment that has been successful in treating chronic pain, including joint pain.

Acupuncture is an ancient Chinese therapy that has been used to cure ailments and illnesses for thousands of years. Thin, tiny needles are placed into particular points in the skin, then can be adjusted with the hands or stimulated with gentle electrical currents.

Acupuncture has been used to treat:

  • Chronic pain
  • Stress
  • Pregnancy pain

A series of acupuncture visits is usually needed to receive real relief. Sometimes, insurance companies may cover the cost of acupuncture therapy, but every plan is different, so its important to check before making an appointment.

As with any treatment, acupuncture has its benefits and drawbacks.

Acupuncture Pros

  • Many people with pain find relief from acupuncture when they couldnt find relief from other sources.
  • When a qualified practitioner is performing acupuncture with sterile, nontoxic needles, the risks are very rare.
  • The effects of treatment is limited .

Acupuncture Cons

Acupuncture: Does It Work for Hip Pain?

Where Will The Needles Be Inserted

How does acupuncture help treat joint pain?  Healthy ask

Depending on the type of arthritis a patient is experiencing, the needle placement will vary. In some cases, the needles are placed directly into the joint being affected . In other cases, the needles are placed in areas not even close to the pain area . This may seem confusing for most patients, but works on a principal known as distal acupuncture. This stimulation will then trigger the vasodilation in the arthritic area to reduce the inflammation and restore normal function.

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Can Acupuncture Help In Arthritis

Arthritis is a pervasive disease condition characterized by pain and inflammation in the joints.

The two main kinds of arthritis are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis.

In certain cases, age and physical activity act as a trigger for the disease while in some other it arises as an auto-immune disorder.

A wide range of treatment options are available but all have certain ill-effects on prolonged exposure.

Thus patients of arthritis usually seek alternative therapies to cure their disease symptoms.

One such therapy finds its roots in China and the Far East and is commonly known as Acupuncture.

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How Can Acupuncture Help Knee Pain

Research suggests that the ancient practice of acupuncture can relieve pain for several conditions and success rates from acupuncture have been high in treating knee pain from arthritis.

Acupuncture promotes an anti-inflammatory effect and releases endogenous opioid endorphins, or the compounds that your body produces and releases to relieve pain. Together, those two effects can reduce the stiffness you feel in your knees and improve your range of motion and overall function.

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Chiropractic Care For Arthritis

Learn when its safe and unsafe to see a chiropractor to ease joint pain and stiffness.

If youve had back pain or a stiff neck, whether from arthritis or an injury, youve likely considered seeing a chiropractor. While its true that chiropractors manipulate or adjust the spine to improve pain and mobility, the benefits may extend beyond the back and neck. By using varying degrees of force in an effort to adjust misaligned joints, chiropractors try to improve the relationship between the spine and nervous system, which they believe may affect the function of all the organs and systems in the body.

We are certainly the front-line providers for back pain, but were also primary-care professionals who look at and evaluate the whole body, says Ron Boesch, a chiropractor and professor and director of clinics at Palmer College of Chiropractic in Davenport, Iowa. Chiropractic treatment continues to grow in mainstream medicine. In a 2015 Gallup poll commissioned by the college, 60% of the more than 5,400 people polled believed chiropractic care is an effective treatment for neck and back pain. But what should you expect from a chiropractor visit and is it safe for arthritis?

What to Expect From a Chiropractor

If youre looking for a non-medication way to take the edge off of those painful joints, chiropractic medicine may be for you, as long as you remember to listen to your body.

Is Chiropractic Care Safe for Arthritis?

Acupuncture For Knee Arthritis Fails One Test But May Still Be Worth A Try

Does acupuncture help Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder?

Acupuncture is a popular form of complementary and alternative therapy, but it has yet to win universal endorsement in the medical communityand usually isnt covered by health insurance. Many satisfied customers continue to pay for treatment out of pocket in spite of mixed findings on the effectiveness of this ancient healing art.

A report published this week in the Journal of the American Medical Association offers weak-to-no proof that acupuncture helps ease the pain of knee arthritis. On the other hand, its just one moderately sized study in a long and continuing series, and theres still credible evidence to suggest that acupuncture helps some people with common pain conditions.

I would be careful saying acupuncture doesnt work for all pain conditions and no one should do it we simply do not know enough yet, says Peter Wayne, PhD, research director of the Osher Center for Integrative Medicine at Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Womens Hospital.

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How Acupuncture Benefits Knee Pain

Knee pain caused by osteoarthritis or injury can have a negative impact on quality of life, reducing mobility and even getting in the way of a good nights sleep. Acupuncture can help provide much-needed relief for those with knee pain.

When the acupuncture needles are placed on the body, a signal is sent along the spinal cord to the brain which may trigger a release of endorphinsknown as feel good hormones. Scientists believe this helps reduce pain.

Acupuncture also may decrease the production of cortisol in the body, a hormone that helps control inflammation. With reduced pain sensations and less inflammation after acupuncture treatments, knee function and mobility can be improved on a short-term basis.

Many factors may play a role in the pain-relieving benefits experienced from acupuncture. Some evidence suggests that a persons expectations and beliefs may have an impact on the results of acupuncture treatment.

Researchers are currently assessing whether a persons expectation that acupuncture is beneficial contributes to a better outcome after acupuncture treatment.

In 2019, acupuncture was given a conditional recommendation in the treatment of osteoarthritis of the knee in the American College of Rheumatology/Arthritis Foundation guideline for the management of osteoarthritis of the hand, hip, and knee.

Acupuncture For Pain Relief: What The Research Says

Acupuncture seems to be helpful for pain in general, but does it work for the pain and discomfort that comes with rheumatoid arthritis?

Its a good question and, unfortunately, one without a clear answer. The scientific research shows mixed results for the use of acupuncture to treat RA pain. Some of the disparity stems from investigative research shortfalls, such as lack of quality or an insufficient number of people in the studies. A review published in September 2008 in the journal Arthritis and Rheumatism compared randomized controlled trials of acupuncture for RA pain relief, and found that six studies reported a decrease in pain compared with controls, five showed a reduction in ESR , and three found a lowering of CRP . Despite some favorable results, the researchers concluded that there was conflicting evidence in those studies that used a placebo group.

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Acupuncture Might Just Be What You Need To Cure Your Arthritis

Acupuncture is a traditional Chinese treatment that involves the penetration of thin needles into a persons skin through specific body points and various depths, depending on illnesses and symptoms.

Medically Reviewed by Dr. K on 2nd Dec 2021.

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  • Are There Any Restrictions on What I Can Do After a Treatment?
  • How Does Acupuncture Help In Arthritis

    Acupuncture &  Arthritis

    Acupuncture is being used as a therapy for more than 2000 years now.

    Just like the technique the history behind the development of this technique is equally interesting and unique.

    As per the legend the technique was developed in China after some of the warriors found that arrows which struck at certain points in the body helped in curing some chronic symptoms.

    This led to the identification of various different acupoints in the body to treat numerous health conditions.

    According to the beliefs in Chinese medicine, our body is made up of two components named yin and yang.

    Diseases or any other health condition disrupts with the natural balance between both these elements thus affecting the flow of vital energy, known as qi in the body.

    Qi is said to be concentrated at 12 major meridians of the body which represent 12 basic body functions. If this energy balance is disrupted it might lead to pain or other ailments.

    Thus acupuncture just helps to relieve the affected points thus enabling the healthy flow of energy.

    On careful examination of the acupoints, it was found that most of these points fall near a cluster of nerves.

    Placement of needles near these nerves than thus result in activation of these nerve fibres as experienced in the form of tingling, electrical sensations, and soreness by a number of patients.

    The activated nerves thence produce endorphins, the chemicals that fight pain thus resulting in improved symptoms of arthritis.

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    Choose Which Channel To Treat

    Now that we know what channels are being affected, we must choose which channels to needle based on the systems of relationships between channels. The channels related to the Bladder and Kidney channels according to the different systems are as follows:

    Sick Meridian
    Testicles, anus Finger

    First, we will needle along the Kidney channel in the lower leg area on the left side. Remember, most pain travels along a contralateral pathway, so we will start with needling on the opposite side from the pain. If the patient does not observe an effect, we will then needle the Kidney channel on the same side as the pain.

    At this point, the patient should be noticing an alleviation of the pain. If no relief is obtained, we will then begin to utilize the channel relationships to choose another channel to place needles on until we get the desired therapeutic result.

    Dropout Rate And Compliance With The Protocol

    Figure summarized the patients’ progress through the trial. Twelve, 10 and 7 patients from the EA, TCA and sham groups respectively completed the study at 20 weeks all except one of the premature dropouts were due to lack of efficacy requiring increase in the dosage of existing DMARD or addition of another DMARD. One patient from the TCA group defaulted follow up after the first visit. Another patient from the TCA group required change in DMARD at week 5. Five patients from the Sham group required change in DMARD at week 2, 2, 5, 11 and 13.

    Patients progress through the trial.

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    Treatment Plan For Arthritis With Acupuncture And/or Massage

    Treatment frequency for acupuncture will be different for each patient, however, our practitioners generally recommend weekly to bi-weekly treatments in the beginning. Once the pain is under control, patients will work with their practitioner to figure out a maintenance plan to minimize or hopefully even prevent future flare ups. Arthritis patients are often pleasantly surprised with how much better their joints feel when they get regular acupuncture.

    Overview Of A Typical Acupuncture Session

    Acupuncture & Health : Acupuncture & Rheumatoid Arthritis

    During your first appointment, your practitioner will ask you questions to learn about your medical history, health, and lifestyle, as well as the condition you are there seeking treatment for.

    Before your acupuncture session begins, you will be asked to lie down or sit in a chair, depending on where the needles will be placed. You may need to roll up your sleeves or pant legs to allow your acupuncturist to access the body parts where needles will be inserted.

    The acupuncturist will wipe the areas where the needles will be inserted with disinfectant before inserting the needles. The practitioner will then insert the needles on various locations on your body, including on or around your knee.

    You should feel minimal to no discomfort when the needles are inserted. Some people report feeling relaxed or even energized when the needles are inserted. You should not feel any soreness or pain during treatment unless you are moving during treatment or a needle is improperly placed.

    The session may last anywhere from a few minutes up to 30 minutes or longer per treatment session.

    In addition to traditional acupuncture, there are other acupuncture options you may be offered:

    Electroacupuncture is a modified form of acupuncture that uses two needles . A mild electrical current passes between the two needles, which provides additional stimulation to the acupoints.

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    Are There Any Restrictions On What I Can Do After A Treatment

    Youâll probably feel really relaxed, because acupuncture can be very calming. So you might want to have someone who can take you home. If you feel great after your session, you still need to pace yourself so you donât try to do too much, too soon. You should keep taking any medicines your doctor prescribed, too.

    Acupuncture Beats Drugs For Knee Pain And Inflammation

    01 March 2017

    Researchers confirm that acupuncture is more effective than two drugs for long-term relief of knee osteoarthritis pain, inflammation, and motor impairment. In one investigation, acupuncture plus herbal medicine outperformed acupuncture plus ibuprofen for pain relief. In another independent investigation, acupuncture outperformed diclofenac for relief of pain, inflammation, and motor impairment due to knee osteoarthritis. Lets take a look at both investigations.

    Acupuncture plus herbs outperforms ibuprofen for the alleviation of knee pain, inflammation, and dysfunction. Guangxi Lingshan County Hospital of Traditional Chinese Medicine researchers investigated the benefits of drugs, electroacupuncture, and herbal medicine for the treatment of knee osteoarthritis. The results of the randomized-controlled clinical trial finds acupuncture plus herbs more effective than the ibuprofen plus acupuncture protocol.

    • Liangqiu
    • Heding
    • Ashi

    A total of 60 patients were treated and evaluated in the study. They were randomly divided into the acupuncture plus herbs treatment group and the acupuncture plus ibuprofen control group, with 30 patients in each group. Both groups received identical electroacupuncture therapy the treatment group was treated with Du Huo Ji Sheng Tang, while the control group was treated with ibuprofen sustained release capsules.

    • Dang Gui

    Additional herbs were prescribed according to individual symptoms, for arthralgia the following herbs were added:

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    Acupuncture Helps Osteoarthritis Pain

    While osteoarthritis differs from rheumatoid arthritis, people living with RA may experience osteoarthritis pain. RA-induced damage to cartilage makes people with RA susceptible to developing secondary osteoarthritis in the weight-bearing joints. In other words, the joints of people with RA are more vulnerable to wear and tear compared with those without RA. According to a review of research published in January 2010 in the Cochrane Library, acupuncture may lead to small improvements in pain and physical function in people with osteoarthritis after eight or more weeks of treatment.

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