Announcer: Acupuncture has been practiced in China and other Asia countries for thousands of years and it is one of the key components of traditional Chinese medicine. In recent decades, acupuncture has become popular in the United States. The theory in traditional Chinese medicine is the disease results from the disruption in the flow of vital energy, or "chi," in the body. Chi is thought to flow along pathways in the body known as meridians. To remove blockages in the flow of chiand restore and maintain health, acupuncturists insert hair-thin needles into the skin at specific points on the body that connect with these meridians.
Acupuncturist: OK, so we're going to start with the procedure for osteoarthritis of the knee using acupuncture.
Announcer: An acupuncture session usually lasts about 30 minutes. The patient lies on a cushioned table face down, face up oron either side. Before inserting the needles, the acupuncturist will swab the skin with alcohol or another disinfectant. When the acupuncturist inserts the needles, you may feel a slight, sharp sensation, but the procedure is usually painless. After the needles are placed, they are sometimes gently stimulated by hand or with electricity.
Acupuncturist: We're going to attach electrodes to the needles in the chi endpoints. Now, as soon as you have sensation I need you to let me know.
Announcer: According to regulations from the Food and Drug Administration, practitioners should use a new set of disposable needles taken from a sealed package for each treatment. Some people feel energized by treatment, while others feel relaxed. Treatment may take place over several weeks or more. Relatively few complications have been reported from the use of acupuncture. However, acupuncture can cause potentially serious side-effects if not delivered properly by a qualified practitioner. If you are considering acupuncture, seek treatment from a qualified acupuncture practitioner.Check credentials, and discuss the number of treatments and the cost involved. Also, tell your healthcare providers about any complementary and alternative practices you use. Give them a full picture of what you do to manage your health.