Arthritis Treatment with Acupuncture
The medical term “Arthritis” simply means inflammation in the joints. There are a few different types of arthritis, including:
1.) Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common type of arthritis. Often called “Wear and Tear” arthritis, this condition is a result of the gradual loss of articular cartilage. The result is painful inflammation caused by attempts of bone to rebuild itself, often creating osteophytes, or spurs. OA is most commonly seen in the knees, hips, hands (2nd and 3rd knuckles), neck and low back. This condition is generally not symmetrical and may only present in one joint.
2.) Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA) is a systemic inflammatory disease which may have an autoimmune origin. After the inflammatory process has set in, there is a resulting degeneration of cartilage, bone, tendons and ligaments. RA usually present symmetrically, and in multiple joints. Other symptoms include: tenderness, a warm or hot feeling in the joints, and a crinkling noise at times.
Other less common types of arthritis include:
3.) Reactive Arthritis (due to infection),
4.) Enteropathic Arthritis (secondary to inflammatory bowel disease,
5.) Psoriatic Arthritis: Joint pain related to psoriasis.
Arthritis, in its many forms, has been successfully treated with Acupuncture for hundreds of years. OA is one of the conditions most researched conditions and is shown to be improved with acupuncture treatment. In conjunction with herbal medicine formulas, patients often have a full reversal and relief of symptoms.
Lifestyle Advice: balance moderate exercise with rest periods; Apply ice up to 24 hours after an inflammatory activity and then use of heat therapy (except for RA). Additional suggestions are weight reduction, and physical therapy to strengthen surrounding muscles.
Dietary Advice: Avoid conventionally raised red meat, reduce/remove sugar, and eliminate night shade veggies (peppers, eggplant, tomatoes, and white potatoes).
A basic treatment plan consists of:
1.) An extensive consultation on the first visit. Follow-up includes specific feedback and advice on diet, supplements and lifestyle factors.
2.) A custom herbal (powder) formula, taken 3 times a day for the first month. A custom formula will be created based on specific constitutional factors. This condition has different presentations clinically, so an herbal formula would need to be customized based on your “pattern” in Chinese Medicine.
3.) Acupuncture treatments, given 1 time each week for the first month. After the first month, acupuncture treatments will be scheduled every other week for 4 sessions.
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