Chronic and acute back pain are two of the most common conditions treated with acupuncture. Starting in 2007, guidelines issued by the American Pain Society and American College of Physicians suggested patients try acupuncture for chronic low back pain.
Symptoms reported by patients include soreness, stiffness, and dull ache in the lower back and can be felt on one side, both sides, or at the center of the lumber spine. Additionally, pain can radiate. For instance, individuals suffering from sciatica may experience pain, tingling, numbness, radiating in the thighs and legs or even to the feet.
One of the most frustrating things for patients is the inability to get comfortable because activity and inactivity can both aggrevate the condition, so sitting, standing, walking or even lying in bed, can aggravate low back pain.
Back conditions are diagnosed using physical exams as well as X-ray or MRI. These tests can show a narrowing of disc space as well as disc protrusion. Many times this will cause pressure on nerves from L4-L5 or L5-S1. Disc protrusions may cause narrowing of the spinal canal possibly resulting in lumbar stenosis.
Convential treatments include pain management through drug therapy, or more aggressive surgical proceedures. Unfortuantely many patients undergoing these treatments still suffer an enormous amount of pain. However, acupuncture can provide an excellent and effective alternative in many cases, and can help with the reduction of pain beyond that of the lower back. Many of our patients have “tried everything” before finally turning to acupunture and finding some relief.
Acupuncture point selection is designed to improve blood circulation and relax paraspinal muscles allowing more fluid and nutrients to nourish the affected area, increasing elasticity of the discs. An increase in elasticity of the discs thru acupuncture helps to reduce disc protrusion and assists the reduction and elimination of lower back pain.
In addition to acupuncture, we use other modalities of treatment including Tuina, Cupping, Moxabustion, Gua Sha and Electrical Stimulation. These treatments combined with acupuncture help with pain management.