Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine for Fibromyalgia

Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture for Fibromyalgia

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Fibromyalgia affects approximately 2 percent of our population. Current research demonstrates that as many 90 percent fibromyalgia sufferers have turned to CAM to alleviate their symptoms. Acupuncture, has been demonstrated to be an effective treatment for fibromyalgia, becoming a popular choice.


What is Fibromyalgia Syndrome?

Fibromyalgia is a currently unexplained by western medicine; it is characterized by pain which is chronic and presents at multiple sites. Pain is worsened when pressure is applied and increased with insomnia, fatigue, and depression. Not all the following symptoms occur in every individual, but many do occur concurrently:

• severe fatigue
• trouble sleeping
• anxiety and/or depression
• stiff joints
• chronic pain and/or headaches
• dryness of the nose, mouth and eyes
• hypersensitivity
• difficulty concentrating (aka “fibro fog”)
• incontinence
• I.B.S.
• poor circulation, numbness, and tingling in the extremities
• painful menstrual cramps
• restless legs syndrome

Fibromyalgia is diagnosed if there is a history of pain which occurs in all four quadrants of the body for at least three months. Eleven of eighteen designated points must be tender and painful upon palpation. There are no physical changes in the tissue or lab markers for fibromyalgia; rather it is a diagnosis made once all else has been excluded.

Fibromyalgia onset sometimes occurs in conjunction with a major emotional or physical trauma, though often there is no precipitating trigger. The risk of developing fibromyalgia increases with age and is more prone among women than men.

Chinese Medical Perspective

Traditionally pain in Chinese medicine is thought to occur when there is blockage or disruption of the bodies Qi and Blood circulation. This idea is often expressed in the popular saying “bu tong ze tong, tong ze bu tong”, when there is blockage, there is pain; no blockage then no pain.

Fibromyalgia occurs usually when there are disharmonies in the Qi and blood circulation of the Liver, Spleen, Kidney and Heart Systems .

Acupuncture for Fibromyalgia

Fibromyalgia is not recognized as one disease in traditional Chinese medicine. There are several patterns of disharmony which may occur in the individual to cause what Western medicine refers to as Fibromyalgia. By considering the persons individual presentation of personal constitution, mood, quality, intensity and location of their pain, sleep and digestion in addition to other constellation of symptoms an individualized treatment strategy will be employed. Treatment may consist of acupuncture, Chinese medicinal herbs, taijiquan and meditation practice, and dietary and lifestyle modifications. A Chinese medical differential diagnosis is made and then the correct points and herbs are selected, rather than giving the same drug to everyone with the same western medical condition. For more information about how acupuncture works visit http://atlanta-acupuncture.net/

 

For more information on ways to help alleviate fibromyalgia pain please send an email to mschwartz@atlanta-acupuncture.net and we will send you a free newsletter with additional information about exercise, diet and meditation practice for fibromyalgia.

If you have fibromyalgia and are interested in a natural and holistic means of reducing the frequency and intensity of your pain call 678-549-7848 today for a free fifteen minute phone consultation