Patient discussion about acupuncture

!!! The questions and answers on this page are written by patients and are not reviewed by health professionals.

Q. Can acupuncture cause bleeding?

I’m thinking to try acupuncture for back pain I have for many months (long story, so far nothing helped), but I’m afraid it’ll cause bruises and bleeding – last week when the nurse draw blood from my arm she left a green sign that lasted almost a week. Is it dangerous? Can it cause infection?
A1Has blood drawing ever caused an infection? The same way, if the new and sterile needles are used, the risk is very low.

Take care
A2The acupuncture needles are way thinner than the needles used to draw blood, so I wouldn’t worry about it. Usually there’s almost no blood during acupuncture.
A3No, acupuncture does not cause bleeding. However, it is sometimes impossible to avoid superficial capillaries lying close to the skin surface, in which case a drop of blood or a slight discoloration of the skin may occur upon needle removal. This is especially likely to happen to patients who are taking blood-thinning medications or to elderly patients whose blood vessel walls are less elastic. This is a normal occurrence in acupuncture treatments and will disappear by itself. Vitamin C may be taken to speed the absorption of any discoloration.
Hope this helps.

Q. Is acupuncture effective.

I heard about a Chinese origin treatment called acupuncture. One of my friends who suffer from wheezing tried with this treatment and considers the treatment to be very slow. Is acupuncture effective?
A1NO… It is not effective in the hands of children.
Yes… as long as you are totally honest about your symptoms to your doctor.
A2one of the problems with chinese meds/herbal meds/nutural meds is that it takes longer to work than conventional meds-also these alternative meds are more for prevention--if you use them on a daily bases your body will become resistant to some diseaces,but this is not always the case-there is a lot of hype connected to these alternative meds.everyone has a cure for something in the news/info TV my suggestion is to dont experament with your health stay with what works/has been proven to work--out of all the sick people i have worked on in the hospital(USA),over25yrs-I have not seen nutural meds cure any one,what i have seen is people wasting time while there disease gets worst-alternative meds are more hype than proof---dont play with your health--mrfoot56--peace
A3i helped a friend who studied Chinese medicine - he needed a patient and i wanted to try it. he did all sort of treatments on me. inserted needles all over my body. it was very helpful! it worked like a charm! but the efficiency varies between people and problems.

Q. Acupuncture during chemo - any experience?

My friend receives chemo for breast cancer, and it makes her quite nauseus. Doctor offered her to take drugs against the nausea, but I thought she can try natural thing before she put another toxic thing in her body. Does anyone have an experience with this? Does it help?
A1It’s very personal. Some people say it helped them very much, and some say it helped only their therapist bank account. You can try it and see if it helps. Just make sure to consult your doctor, because it may be dangerous to do acupuncture during chemo.
A2I don't have any presonal experience with this, however I found an article on this topic that might give you some info:

Q. Is there any danger in the alternative treatment of Acupuncture?

I've been suffering from back pains for about 3 months now. I tried Acupuncture for the first time yesterday and was wondering whether somebody in the community tried it and have any knowledge about the success and dangerous of such a treatment.
A1Hi Justin - Thank you so much for sharing your personal experience with me. You are right, I should ask these questions. I will ask my therapist and follow your advice although the place and the therapist look good and professional to me.
A2a good friend of mine was studying Chinese medicine and Acupuncture. he needed patients for that time and i volunteered. it was very successful with my problem (chronic sinusitis), very effective, but it varies between people and conditions. about the dangers, there shouldn't be any if you do it in a well known clinic with a certified (from a good school) therapist. see if the place is clean and don't be afraid to ask him where he studied, when and investigate about the place.
good luck :)

Q. can acupuncture help neck stiffness?

I have neck pain- especially stiffness every week- once or twice. Try a lot of things but always comes back. Can acupuncture help? tell me please because if not- I dont want to put needles for nothing...
A1Acupuncture can fix most cases of neck pain, usually in 3-5 treatments. Most neck pain is due to muscular tightness, and acupuncture is very effective at releasing contracted muscles.

here's an article on Acupuncture for Back Pain:

The treatment of neck pain is very similar. There are very few cases of side effects with acupuncture. However, if you experience consistent pain that get progressively worse, you should visit your MD for x-rays and an MRI to rule out any structural problems (bone spurs, disc degeneration, tumors, etc).
A2There is no consensus regarding the effectiveness of acupuncture - many large trials and reviews found no benefit, although some trials did find such benefit out of acupuncture in the treatment of neck pain.

However, acupuncture is not risk free - serious side effects are possible, although extremely rare (about 6 in 100,000 in one trial), but mild side effects are more common (several percents) and in some cases acupuncture may aggravate the pain. Acupuncture is also prohibited in some patients (e.g. risk for bleeding or infection).

Remember to consult your doctor before you start any new treatment, including alternatives.

Take care,

Q. Can acupuncture help while pregnant?

This is Markell; my daughter is 21 years old, married and 8 weeks pregnant. She often suffers from headache. She is taking Zonagran which reduces her pain. Her doctor feels that taking that meds continuously will not do good. But she is experiencing daily headaches. Can acupuncture help and can it be used while pregnant?
ASurely, acupuncture can help you. Acupuncture is a very effective treatment for headaches. I like to tell you that, herbal Medicine is generally good for all especially for pregnancy women, it can be safely given up to the birth and then beyond to help the mother recover. My wife was on herbal medicine throughout her pregnancy and safely delivered a baby. Take care of her!!!

Q. What is the difference between acupuncture and acupressure?

AThe name makes it clear as it is puncturing and it is through pressure based therapy. Both are based on same contact points to be punctured or pressurized. While for puncturing the needle is used and pressure is applied by finger or tools. Acupuncture should be done only by the professional trained in Traditional Chinese medicine. Acupressure can be done by anyone while using the handbook.
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