Acupuncture refers to the use of fine needles to stimulate certain anatomical regions of the skin to bring about the rebalancing of energy flows within the body. Acupuncture has had a tumultuous history even in China, but has been part of the medical establishment there for greater than two thousand years. The most commonly studied techniques involve penetration of the skin with fine, metallic needles followed by manual or electrical stimulation. Acupuncture is probably the single most studied method of complementary or alternative ‘medicine’ in the west, with initial exposure in the US related to diplomatic exposure in the 70s—particularly reporter James Reston’s experience with acupuncture for pain control following emergency appendectomy while traveling with President Nixon. Historically, the methodological quality of relevant studies has been limited, but that is slowly changing, as the practice becomes more mainstream.
These days, pain is one of the primary areas where acupuncture’s utility has been more widely established and accepted. As a pain specialized practice, our focus is placed on acupuncture for pain related conditions; we can help determine whether you or a loved one may be a good candidate for acupuncture or to consider more conventional means, or perhaps both. More recent studies trying to explore acupuncture’s mechanism of action compare it to a form of neuromodulation, with local and remote effects attributable to endogenous opioid peptide release and neurotransmitters like adenosine. The following link may be helpful.
Dr. Ng is board certified and ACGME fellowship trained in pain management, and practices acupuncture. He has found that acupuncture can be a valuable adjunct in various pain syndromes and for the patient for whom conventional treatments may have yielded suboptimal results. He also has an interest in the use of acupuncture for smoking cessation anddetoxification as defined by the National Acupuncture Detoxification Association (ie NADA protocol), as well as general health. In addition to offering acupuncture on an individual basis, we are also developing a community acupuncture model, with the intention of helping to make acupuncture treatments more accessible and affordable. Please call our clinic for details.