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A practitioner of acupuncture; a formally designated acupuncturist is certified by the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM).
There are currently approximately 5,000 acupuncture practitioners in the US, and 30 schools that offer training in acupuncture; the curriculum consists of 2,400 hours of instruction taken over 3–4 years; some acupuncturists are MDs; many belong to the Am Academy of Medical Acupuncture.
Segen's Medical Dictionary. © 2012 Farlex, Inc. All rights reserved.


(ak′yŭ-pŭngk″chŭr) [ acu- + puncture]
A technique for treating pain, producing regional anesthesia, treating acute or chronic illness (such as hormonal, immune, or orthopedic), or preventing disease by passing thin needles through the skin into specific points on the body. The free ends of the needles are manually twirled, heated by moxa or moxibustion, or connected to a weak electrical current. They are then typically left in place for about 20 min. Although acupuncture has a variety of uses in Asia and Europe, in the U.S. it is principally considered a treatment for local pain. It is often used in combination with other therapies, including massage, meditation, and herbal remedies. Research suggests that acupuncture relieves pain by stimulating the release of endogenous opioids, other neurotransmitters (such as serotonin), and by directly affecting afferent nerve fibers. Acupuncture has also been found to be effective in veterinary applications. In the U.S. professional proficiency in acupuncture is attained by passing an examination administered by the National Commission for the Certification of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine of the American Academy of Medical Acupuncture.acupuncturist (-chŭ-rist)


It is important that the acupuncturist use sterile or disposable needles and that care be taken to prevent puncturing adjacent organs.
Medical Dictionary, © 2009 Farlex and Partners
References in periodicals archive ?
Wai Tak Cheung (former president of the Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine Society of Oregon) chronicled the brief history of acupuncture legalization in Oregon in his speech delivered on July 23, 1994, highlighting several pioneering Chinese acupuncturists who established the first acupuncture clinic in Oregon, including Dr.
"When the needle taps the tight tissue, it creates a micro-trauma which brings a lot of blood to the area," says Bianca Beldini, a licensed acupuncturist and physical therapist at Sundala Center for Wellness in New York City.
After my first appointment, I was able to walk out of the acupuncturist's office after needing assistance to go in.
You are both a medical doctor and an acupuncturist. When do you prescribe meds and when do you prescribe acupuncture?
Over the same period there was an increase in the percentage of women who consulted a massage therapist (20% to 27%), chiropractor (14% to 16%), and acupuncturist (5% to 6%).
However, most qualified acupuncturists register with the self-regulatory British Acupuncture Council.
The group of acupuncturists, massage therapists, and chiropractors failed to convince a state district court judge on the same merits.
Your acupuncturist will also work with you to help you make lifestyle changes."
During the seven-week treatment period, 157 participants received 10 acupuncture treatments in a manner individually prescribed by a diagnostic acupuncturist; 158 underwent a standardized course of acupuncture treatments considered effective by experts for low back pain; 162 received 10 sessions of simulated acupuncture, in which practitioners used a toothpick inside of an acupuncture needle guide tube to mimic the insertion, stimulation and removal of needles; and 161 received usual care.