What is TCM?

Traditional Chinese Medicine is a system of healing that encompasses Acupuncture, Massage, Herbs, Cupping, Moxibustion, Nutrition, Exercise, and other techniques (Fire needle, injection of herb dilutions, bee therapy, catgut implantation, etc).

How can TCM help my condition ?

Unlike a Western diagnosis based in chemical imbalances and structural damage in the circulatory, muscular, skeletal, hormonal, nervous system. TCM diagnosis is based on the external and internal influences that affect our bodies and our way of living, and therefore our health, and the different therapeutic techniques we can use to expel them, or regulate them, for example a person with a big load of stress and anger in his life affects the Liver directly thus producing headache, eye  problems, etc. in this case we will utilize herbs to calm down the Liver as well as acupoints, at the same time we can prescribe another kind of herb to tonify or enrich the coolness of the body and its sedative effects, of course adding a massage therapy to release tension from muscles will culminate the treatment. Another example could be: a person who has been under the sun for hours without any protection will allow heat to enter his body and thus create pathological heat manifestations inside them, manifested as dehydration, syncope, fever, etc. In this case we can prescribe cool herbs as well as releasing heat through acupoints.

Therefore in TCM the disease is managed from a different perspective than just a chemical lack or anatomical defect, and answers the question : Why is there this imbalance or problem in our bodies?

A TCM treatment will help not only remove the pathogenic substances in our bodies ( Cold, Wind, Damp, etc), but throughout the combination of therapies mentioned above, help regulate our internal organs thus also influencing the psychological patterns reflected in each of our organs ( heart is related to Joy, Kidney related to fear, etc ) thus bringing harmony to our bodies, minds and life.

For which pathologies is TCM recommended?

According to the WHO (World Health Organization): The Diseases, symptoms or conditions for which acupuncture has been proved-through controlled trials-to be an effective treatment are:

(I took the liberty of leaving only the ones I have clinical experience with) for a complete list of pathologies, please visit: http://apps.who.int/medicinedocs/en/d/Js4926e/5.html

  • Adverse reactions to radiotherapy and/or chemotherapy

  • Allergic rhinitis (including hay fever)

  • Biliary colic

  • Depression (including depressive neurosis and depression following stroke)

  • Dysentery, acute bacillary

  • Dysmenorrhoea, primary

  • Epigastralgia, acute (in peptic ulcer, acute and chronic gastritis, and gastrospasm)

  • Facial pain (including craniomandibular disorders)

  • Headache

  • Hypertension, essential

  • Hypotension, primary

  • Knee pain

  • Low back pain

  • Nausea and vomiting

  • Neck pain

  • Pain in dentistry (including dental pain and temporomandibular dysfunction)

  • Periarthritis of shoulder

  • Postoperative pain

  • Renal colic

  • Rheumatoid arthrtis

  • Sciatica

  • Sprain

  • Stroke

  • Tennis elbow

What can I expect from a TCM treatment ?

First of all, to feel better !

Needles are sterile, generally cause no bleeding upon entry or removal, with little or no pain being felt; however, slight bruising may be experienced on occasion. The usual number of needles used in a session can vary from 10 to 15, and they are left inserted 15 to 30 minutes. The number of treatments necessary will depend upon your condition, if your symptoms are chronic or acute and your health in general. A course of treatment usually consists of weekly or biweekly visits for 4 to 10 weeks, followed by less frequent visits as the condition improves.

The needles may vary in size, depending upon your condition and the course of treatment prescribed. In addition to needling  your treatment may also include a variety of non-needling techniques such as moxibustion (heat), acupressure, herbal formulas, etc. One advantage of acupuncture treatment is the absence of serious side effects which may result from the use of prescription drugs.

Are there any Adverse Effects ?

The current practice of Acupuncture in the United States and Europe is associated with a very low incidence of adverse  events ( as low as 1 in 10,000 to 1 in 100,000 needle insertions ).

Is it painful ? Does it Hurt? What to do if I am scared of needles?

First of all it is important that you know that the size of an acupuncture needle differs from standard medical syringes, for  illustrative purposes please take a look at the next picture so you can have an idea of how an acupuncture needle looks like 
as well as its thickness.