A Western way in which acupuncture’s function could be illustrated, would be to say that it is essentially causing three things to occur. Reduction of inflammation, optimizing the balance of the endocrine system and inducing anesthesia. There are many styles of acupuncture that are practiced around the world. Each share the points and meridians in common. However, techniques and equipment differ widely between practitioners. In China, most treatment focuses on multiple needle forms and electro-stimulation of needles. In Japan, acupuncture is an occupation for the blind. Techniques are based more on palpation diagnosis and single needle acupuncture as opposed to theoretical point groupings and multiple needles in Chinese and Korean techniques.

Japanese Palpation Based Acupuncture (PBA)

 

Having been researched and developed in Japan by blind healers, PBA practitioners emphasize information acquired by touch to determine needle placement. PBA differs significantly from traditional Chinese forms of acupuncture in that one needle is placed at a time and gently manipulated until the tissue around it acquires a correct healthy tone after which the needle is removed and the next point addressed.  1/2 hour and  1 hour sessions are both offered with the practitioner working on the individual for the entire duration (more labor intensive) but with quicker, more thorough results.  Alexander Julien Audette practices PBA at the multi-disciplinary Anello Clinic which serves the Kitchener-Waterloo and Cambridge  Ontario areas.

Perhaps the single greatest condition which people use acupuncture for is pain management and soft tissue injury.  However, there are many conditions for which acupuncture is suitable. The following is an alphabetical list of the conditions, which the WHO (World Health Organization) officially recognizes as treatable by acupuncture:

Neurological disorders

Bell’s palsy
Cardiac neurosis
Craniocerebral injury, closed
Facial pain
Neuralgias
Reflex sympathetic dystrophy
Stroke
TIA
Tourette syndrome

Pain
Arthritis (rheumatoid and osteo)
Abdominal pain of various etiologies
Cancer pain
Earache
Eye pain
Golfer’s elbow
Intermittent claudication
Musculoskeletal pain
Renal colic
Post-operative pain
Sciatica
Shingles
Temporomandibular joint (TMJ) dysfunction
Tennis elbow

Digestive disorders
Biliary colic
Colelithiasis
Diarrhea (various etiologies)
Cravings
Gastritis
Gastrospasm
Peptic ulcer
Nausea and vomiting (various etiologies)
Ulcerative colitis

Metabolic disorders
Diabetes type 1 and 2
Thyroid disorders

Gynecological disorders
Amenorrhea
Dysmenorrhea (painful periods)
Infertility
Induction of labor
Insufficient lactation
Labor pain
Mastitis
Malposition of fetus (breach presentation)
Menopause
Morning sickness
Polycystic ovarian syndrome
Premenstrual syndrome
Urinary tract infection

Pediatric disorders
Bedwetting
Colic
Insomnia
Failure of closure of fontanel
Failure to breast feed

Respiratory disorders
Asthma (various etiologies)
Bronchitis
Pleurisy
Cough (various etiologies)

Other disorders
Acne
Addictions
Allergies
Erectile dysfunction
Insomnia
Meniere disease
Pruritis (itching)
Schizophrenia