Acupuncture Cures Low Back Pain

Study suggests that acupuncture works effectively for pain relief, draws international attention
By Jaseng Center Staff
New research by Korean doctors of Oriental Medicine suggested that an acupuncture method could reduce acute lower back pain faster and more effectively than conventional drug injections.

It is the first study of Oriental Medicine for pain relief that has received international recognition through the PAIN journal.

In a joint study conducted by doctors of Jaseng Hospital of Korean Medicine and researchers of the Korea Institute for Oriental Medicine, pain was reduced significantly more among patients who received a nontraditional acupuncture treatment called motion style acupuncture (MSAT) compared with another group who had an injection of diclofenac sodium, a drug widely used for immediate pain relief.

“Our study has shown that MSAT was more effective for pain and function in acute low back pain patients with severe disability in the short term and up to four weeks (longer) than conventional non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug injection,” the report said.

The clinical trial report titled “Motion style acupuncture in acute low back pain patients with severe disability” was published in the online edition of the Journal of the International Association for the study of Pain, one of the leading organizations for pain relief and treatment.

It will be published in the July print edition as the first study of Oriental Medicine for pain relief to be featured in the U.S – based medical journal, the authors said.

“This is the first study that shows objective evidence that acupuncture works better as pain relief than drugs. We are glad to get such international attention and recognition,” said Ha In-Hyuk, a doctor at Jaseng Hospital of Korean Medicine.

The study assessed the pain level on a scale of 0 to 10 as well as the functional level in activities of patients from the two groups. A group of 28 patients who received the motion style acupuncture said the pain level reduced 46 percent on average in 30 minutes while the other 28 patients who had the drug injection had their pain level drop 8.7 percent in the same amount of time. The level of physical disability of patients who were treated with the acupuncture method dropped 39 percent on average in the first 30 minutes while others said their disability merely improved.

The treatment method, developed by Jaseng Hospital, is similar to traditional acupuncture in that it places needles in specific meridian acupuncture points and uses manual stimulation of the needles. It requires a patient to exercise while having acupuncture needles inserted. MSAT differs in that it keeps that patient engaged in active or passive action of related body parts for a certain amount of time during acupuncture. Practitioners lift a patient in pain with severe disability by putting their arms around his or her waist and apply needles to acupoints – the back of a neck, elbow, hands and top of the foot. Patients are asked to walk with assistance from practitioners. In less than in 20 minutes, patients were able to walk on their own and the level of pain was reduced, the hospital said.

The pain level cited from the two groups reached a similar stage six months after the treatment. However, more patients who had the drug injection were hospitalized for intensive care for a longer period of time, it added.

Of the 28 patients in the injection group, 27 were hospitalized for nearly 18 days on average. A total of 19 patients in the acupuncture group admitted themselves to hospitals and stayed 12.5 days on average.

“The strong stimulation of distal acupuncture points in motion style acupuncture treatment may enhance the effects of pain relief by triggering ‘diffuse noxious inhibitory controls’ and increasing the secretion of endorphins by stimulating internal activity of the central nervous system,” Shin Joon-shik, coauthor of the study, said in the paper.

Joon-Shik Shin, a Korean Eastern Medicine doctor, developed the MSAT- a non-traditional acupuncture treatment around 1990. “The technique is highly effective in reducing musculoskeletal pain and increasing limited mobility, and provides almost immediate relief in acute cases with severe pain and restricted motion,” Dr. Shin said.

The motion style acupuncture technique (MSAT) is highly effective in reducing musculoskeletal pain and increasing limited mobility, and provides almost immediate relief in acute cases with severe pain and restricted motion. MSAT has been used for a wide range of applications from first-aid treatment for patients suffering from intense pain of acute musculoskeletal origin to various spinal and joint sprains, temporomandibular joint syndrome, frozen shoulder (adhesive capsulitis), gonarthritis, and intervertebral disc herniation.

The study has shown the effectiveness of MSAT for acute low back pain patients with severe disability can reduce the treatment period in the short term. According to cost-effectiveness threshold values, our new research can be associated with further health economic effects such as cost-effective treatment strategy in patient with acute low back pain.

Jaseng Hospital of Korean Eastern Medicine gave a presentation on the “Immediate effects of motion style acupuncture treatment (MSAT) in acute low back pain with severe disability: a multicenter, randomized, controlled trial” at the America Pain Society (APS)’s 31st Annual Scientific Meeting in May 2012 in Honolulu, Hawaii, and the short term effects at the World Congress on Pain hosted by the International Association for the Study of Pain (IASP) in August 2012 in Milan, Italy.

The distinct treatment methods of Jaseng Hospital of Korean Eastern Medicine is attracting more and more worldwide attention and admiration.

In 2009 Jaseng Center for alternative medicine, a branch clinic of Jaseng Medical Group, opened in Fullerton, Calif. and six more clinics in the U.S.

“Requests and invitations for joint research and education to learn more about and adopt Jaseng’s non-surgical disc treatment are constantly flooding in from all corners of the world. Those include leading American conventional treatment hospitals such as Beverly Hills’ Cedars-Sinai Medical Center, Chicago’s Rush Univ. Medical Center,” said Dr. Joon-Shik Shin, the president of Jaseng Medical Group.

Fibromyalgia Symptoms & Treatment

What is Fibromyalgia?

Fibromyalgia is a very frustrating syndrome for those who suffer from it.  It does often take a multi-layered treatment approach and a commitment to healing oneself.  This is often where the problem lies.  A person who is in pain and is feeling so sensitive has a hard time having the energy and faith to find both the internal and external resources to commit to the healing process which may involve several modalities such as acupuncture, herbs, flower essences and meditation.

Acupuncture for Fibromyalgia Syndrome
By: Diane Joswick, L.Ac., MSOM

Fibromyalgia Syndrome (FMS) affects an estimated 2 percent of the population. Conventional therapies are limited in the success of treating this complex and unexplained condition. Current treatment is largely comprised of prescribing different medications for the varying symptoms in a trial and error approach. Research shows that as many as 90 percent of people with fibromyalgia have turned to complementary and alternative medicine to manage their symptoms. Acupuncture, in particular, has become a popular treatment choice and has shown to be an effective treatment for FMS.

What is Fibromyalgia Syndrome?

Fibromyalgia is a medically unexplained syndrome characterized by chronic widespread pain, a heightened and painful response to pressure, insomnia, fatigue, and depression. While not all affected persons experience all associated symptoms, the following symptoms commonly occur together:

• chronic pain
• debilitating fatigue
• difficulty sleeping
• anxiety and depression
• joint stiffness
• chronic headaches and jaw pain
• difficulty swallowing
• dryness in mouth, nose, and eyes
• hypersensitivity to odors, bright lights, and loud noises
• inability to concentrate (called “fibro fog”)
• incontinence
• irritable bowel syndrome
• numbness or tingling in the fingers and feet
• painful menstrual cramps
• poor circulation in hands and feet (called Raynaud’s phenomenon)
• restless legs syndrome

Fibromyalgia is diagnosed when there is a history of widespread pain in all four quadrants of the body for a minimum duration of three months and pain when pressure is applied to at least 11 of 18 designated tender points on the body. This condition does not result in any physical damage to the body or its tissues and there are no laboratory tests which can confirm this diagnosis.

Symptoms often begin after a physical or emotional trauma, but in many cases there appears to be no triggering event. Women are more prone to develop the disorder than are men, and the risk of fibromyalgia increases with age.

From an Eastern Perspective

The Oriental medicine theory of pain is expressed in this famous Chinese saying: “Bu tong ze tong, tong ze bu tong” which means “free flow: no pain, no free flow: pain.”

Pain is seen as a disruption of the flow of Qi within the body. The disruption of Qi that results in fibromyalgia is usually associated with disharmonies of the Liver, Spleen, Kidney and Heart Systems.

The Acupuncture Treatment

Oriental Medicine does not recognize fibromyalgia as one particular disease pattern. Instead, it aims to treat the specific symptoms that are unique to each individual depending on their constitution, emotional state, intensity and location of their pain, digestive health, sleeping patterns and an array of other signs and symptoms. Therefore, if 10 people are treated with Oriental medicine for fibromyalgia, each of these 10 people will receive a unique, customized treatment with different acupuncture points, different herbs and different lifestyle and dietary recommendations.

Because the symptoms of fibromyalgia are highly variable form one person to another, a wide array of traditional and alternative treatments has been shown to be the most effective way of treating this difficult syndrome. A treatment program may include a combination of psychological or behavioral therapies, medications, exercise, acupuncture, herbal medicine and bodywork.

Stress Symptoms and How to Overcome it

What is Stress, what are the causes and how to overcome it

Stress is the body’s reaction to the demands of daily life.  Stress can be caused by many factors; hectic schedules, problems at work, family issues and lack of sleep.  If you ask people to explain what causes stress for them, they may provide different answers.  We all react differently to stress. What causes stress for one person may not be the case for someone else.  How we respond to life’s demands is critical.  Some stress can be good.  It can help with focus, energy or encourage you to meet deadlines.  However, without stress prevention, a person’s health can be affected leading to headaches, heart disease, diabetes, obesity and depression.

Stress Warning Signs and Symptoms

Cognitive Symptoms Emotional Symptoms
  • Memory problems
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Poor judgment
  • Seeing only the negative
  • Anxious or racing thoughts
  • Constant worrying
  • Moodiness
  • Irritability or short temper
  • Agitation, inability to relax
  • Feeling overwhelmed
  • Sense of loneliness and isolation
  • Depression or general unhappiness
Physical Symptoms Behavioral Symptoms
  • Aches and pains
  • Diarrhea or constipation
  • Nausea, dizziness
  • Chest pain, rapid heartbeat
  • Loss of sex drive
  • Frequent colds
  • Eating more or less
  • Sleeping too much or too little
  • Isolating yourself from others
  • Procrastinating or neglecting responsibilities
  • Using alcohol, cigarettes, or drugs to relax
  • Nervous habits (e.g. nail biting, pacing)

Dealing with Stress

As practitioners, we can offer practical tips and focus on how to manage stress to prevent it from becoming chronic and overwhelming:
  • Add laughter to your daily routine
  • Learn to relax body and mind
  • Listen to your body – when your body experiences discomfort such as headaches, stomachaches or insomnia, it’s time for relaxation, meditation or exercise
  • Get into physical activity – jogging, hiking or a short walk can improve mood and reduce symptoms
  • Eat well – keep a healthy diet (no overeating or under-eating)
  • Make sure to get enough sleep
  • Smoking or drinking alcohol increases stress levels

With a proper diagnosis, implementing these practices into your patient’s daily routines and using the right herbal formulas, you can help your patients reduce stress in their life and get them on the road to a healthy mind and healthy body.

Resources : Table url http://www.helpguide.org/mental/stress_signs.htm