Acupuncture and Chinese Herbal Medicine:  Commonly asked questions and answers…


What does Chinese medicine treat or what can it accomplish?


  • All but life threatening conditions
  • Well known for treating pain
  • To stop smoking
  • Drug and alcohol addiction
  • Obesity
  • Cosmetic and beautification issues like elimination of scar tissue, wrinkles, sagging skin, acne, and many skin disorders
  • Mental and emotional imbalances like anxiety and depression
  • Infertility and women’s issues (gynecology), including inducing delivery and turning an inverted fetus
  • Stress management
  • Fitness and sports enhancement, prevention of injuries
  • Optimizing mental functioning and clarity
  • Immune boosting and chronic allergies
  • Detoxify AND strength the body at the same time
  • Basically treating the root cause of all diseases and conditions without causing negative side effects



Traditional Chinese Medicine, or TCM, including acupuncture and herbal medicine, treats all conditions as long as they are not in the advanced or life threatening stage.  Although TCM may be used together with modern western medicine, the advantages of surgery and drugs to treat life threatening conditions are obvious.  However, the unwanted side effects of western treatment can often be avoided by using TCM before a condition is life threatening.


How does it work?


  • By balancing out the different systems in the body
  • By unblocking that which is blocked: poor blood flow, poor nerve conduction, poor energy flow


Acupuncture points are like electrical switches in the body, which can sometimes short circuit and cause chronic pain or habitual destructive behaviors like overeating or smoking.  We can compare the body to an electrical switchboard, with many connections.  The proper functioning of the system depends on all the circuits and switches working properly.  When a circuit is blocked, symptoms result.  If the system is not working optimally, then there is advanced aging, recurrent health problems, emotional suffering, etc.  By unblocking and regulating the circuit board, we can restore optimal functioning of the body.  This extends into the realms of boosting immunity, slowing the aging process, and strengthening the mind and body in all ways.


Why choose Acupuncture or TCM?


  • Because the western therapy is not working
  • Because of the negative side effects of western therapy
  • Because it is a safe, effective, natural way of restoring health
  • Because it empowers the patient to take control of their own health without being reliant on drugs or other damaging treatments.
  • Because it is much more cost effective than conventional western treatment
  • Because it treats the root cause of disease, and not just masks the symptoms
  • Because it prevents advanced diseases from developing by addressing symptoms in the early stages



Here are some success stories and especially fantastic results:


  • Weight reduction without a drastic change of diet and an increase of energy


I had one patient who lost 25 kg after 2 months of acupuncture and taking herbs, and they reported having so much energy that they WANTED to exercise, AND they were able to eat pretty much any foods as long as they were whole foods and not junk food.  They lost their sweet cravings after a few weeks, and ended up learning to kite surf!


  • The equivalent of a face lift without surgery or botox or any other harmful techniques


This patient had sagging skin, wrinkles, and circles under her eyes and very low self esteem when she first came to see me.  After 2 months of acupuncture, she looked like a different person.  She also reported an increase in energy and you could see that she had a glowing sparkle in her eyes that reflected the deep underlying organic changes in her body.  In addition to the cosmetic change, she also reported improved sleep, more balanced emotions (no depression anymore), and a new love in her life!


  • Chronic pain with no western diagnosable cause is alleviated in one session:


I have had excellent success with hip and shoulder pain. Many patients who have had chronic pain for 20 years had a 90 percent reduction in pain after the first session and complete elimination of pain after about 8 treatments.  The most dramatic example is a case of sciatic or hip pain for 23 years which was completely gone after the first treatment.  I treated this patient for other problems like insomnia and digestive difficulties for another two months, and the hip pain never returned, even years later.  Furthermore, the insomnia, digestive and fatigue issues were resolved after those two months as well.


  • Elimination of habitually destructive behaviors:


I have helped hundreds of patients quit smoking, gotten them to quit alcohol completely without any negative side effects, and have also helped drug addicts to become completely drug free with no relapse for years.  The most dramatic case was a musician who had been struggling with alcohol and drugs for years.  After a month of doing acupuncture 2 to 3 times per week, he was drug and alcohol free.  Now, 3 years later, he volunteers his time helping other addicts by doing simple techniques like stimulating points on the ear and teaching them self help methods like EFT (Emotional Freedom Technique).


  • Resolution of phobias and deep seated traumas:


I have had many patients who had recurrent nightmares and anger issues from post traumatic stress disorder, especially those who were in military service in Iraq and Vietnam.  Even after years of psychological counseling, they continued to suffer from their past traumas.  All of these patients found relief through the acupuncture, and many now lead normal lives with complete resolution of all their previous symptoms.  I remember one case in particular where the man was unable to sleep through the night for 30 years, and came to me after the first session with the joy of having slept the whole night.  After a month of acupuncture, he had complete peace of mind and no more sleeping problems or nightmares.


  • Regeneration of nerve function which was previously thought irreparable, esp. loss of motor or sensory function:


I remember one patient who had no sense of smell for 5 years, and after the first session, he commented on the smell of some moxibustion which I had been burning as a treatment for another patient.  After about 10 sessions, he was able to smell food and flowers, much to his surprise.  I attributed this to a blockage of the nerve pathways, which only needed stimulation to re-establish the connections.  Stroke and paralysis are especially responsive to acupuncture.  I had one patient who was confined to a wheelchair for 3 years and was walking again, albeit slowly, after 6 months of acupuncture therapy!


  • Elimination of longstanding allergies and other immune related conditions:


Many people who had suffered from allergies to dust, cats, mold, peanuts, and other foods have had complete success in eliminating their allergies with acupuncture alone.  I remember one case in particular where the woman broke out in skin rashes after eating any kinds of nuts and after a few sessions she cheerfully entered my office snacking on a bag of mixed nuts, exclaiming what a miracle this Chinese medicine was!  By strengthening the organs’ functions and boosting the immunity, people are able to process what their bodies were previously responding to as foreign or toxic.  Instead of having to eliminate or avoid things, you can change the way your body deals with “allergens”.




I am scared of needles, is it painful?


I specialize in treating people who are fearful and sensitive of needles.  By using very fine needles, people experience no pain and their body can become strong and responsive to acupuncture.  Most people actually fall asleep or enter a very deep state of relaxation once the needles are in.  Many people who have had negative experiences with Chinese doctors who use a more aggressive style find that my acupuncture brings about a very blissful state without any pain or anxiety.


How many treatments does it take?


Most people find relief after the very first session, and in a few cases, complete remission of their problem immediately.  But for most people, who have had their complaints for years, there is a steady and gradual resolution of symptoms until finally when their body is back in balance, they experience no more symptoms, even those that they thought were unrelated to their main complaint.  One may come in for back pain, and after a few weeks they notice that not only is their back pain gone, but their sleep is better, they have more energy, and their sugar cravings are gone!  Typically a series of eight treatments is sufficient to see long term results, but it really varies from person to person.


Are there any interactions with conventional treatments?


I have great experience in working with patients who have been diagnosed with chronic diseases like hypothyroidism, diabetes, or hypertension and have been on medication for years thinking that they must continue for the rest of their lives.  While I don’t recommend people to quit any medication prescribed by their doctors, I have seen these patients’ bodies change to the point that they no longer need these medications.  They go in for their blood tests or other exams only to find out that their thyroid levels, hormone levels, blood quality, or other western medicine parameters have changed, and then the doctor suggests that they may reduce or quit taking altogether medications they had been reliant on for sleep, energy levels, emotions, high blood pressure, cholesterol levels, etc.  This is very common for acupuncture patients to become completely drug free after learning how to balance their bodies and strengthen their organs! In some unique cases people are dependent on their conventional western treatments, but most of the time the TCM complements western therapy and in many cases can replace it.


Here are some useful links:

ITM Institute for Traditional Medicine articles

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Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine Information