Acupuncture and chronic pain, real or placebo?
The traditional explanation for pain in Chinese Medicine is ‘If there is free flow, there is no pain: if there is pain, there is no free flow’. Trauma leads to inflammation, scar tissue, bruising, restriction of circulation at local or distal tissues, taut bands of muscles, impinged nerves, trigger points etc and all of these are a disruption of the normal circulation of qi and blood. Acupuncturists who work with patients, and patients who receive acupuncture may experience pain reduction, improved circulation, improved range of motion, improved mobility and for those of us who have had positive experiences, the proof of the pudding is in the eating.
However there are a number of questions bouncing around regarding ‘why that particular point there, instead of somewhere else?’ And ‘is it just placebo?’
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