What is Medical Acupuncture?

Acupuncturist taking a patient's pulse

Traditional Acupuncturist Taking a Patient’s Pulse

Medical Acupuncture is a more limited form of Acupuncture that is useful for many muscle and joint problems.

A Medical Acupuncturist is someone (usually a conventional medical practitioner) who has done a course for a few days learning how to insert Acupuncture needles into specific points, this is usually in order to help with forms of muscular or joint pain. Treatment by a Medical Acupuncturist does not involve the development of a Chinese Medical diagnosis and treatment is not guided by the principles of Chinese Medicine and this is the main way in which it is different. The experience of having treatment is much the same.

Although some conventional practitioners do commit to the lengthy training required to practise Traditional Acupuncture, most don’t so if you have had Acupuncture administered by a Doctor, Physiotherapist, Chiropractor, Osteopath or other similarly trained conventional medical practitioner you have probably had Medical, not Traditional Acupuncture.

A Traditional Acupuncturist will usually say they are a Traditional Acupuncturist or will say they practise TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine), 5 Elements or Japanese Acupuncture.

Medical Acupuncture helps many people but, if you have had Medical Acupuncture and it did not help you, you could probably still be helped by Traditional Acupuncture because, although both involve the insertion of needles, Medical and Traditional Acupuncture are very different systems of medicine.

A Traditional Acupuncturist has engaged in an extensive (usually over a number of years), course of study of Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture theory and is equipped to make a Chinese Medical diagnosis of your current health picture. It is this ability to determine the Chinese Medical diagnosis  and then, on the basis of this, to select the best Acupuncture points to address imbalances in your body that allows a Traditional Acupuncturist to treat a wide range of physical and mental/emotional issues and to treat multiple issues at once.