San Francisco, CA – May is National Arthritis Month. Arthritis is one of the most pervasive diseases in the United States and is the leading cause of disability. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention one out of every three Americans (an estimated 70 million people) is affected. For most people arthritis pain and inflammation cannot be avoided as the body ages. In fact, most people over the age of 50 show some signs of arthritis. Joints naturally degenerate over time. Fortunately, arthritis can often be managed Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine.
Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine have been found to be extremely effective at treating the pain and inflammation associated with all types of arthritis. Studies show that acupuncture can stimulate the production of endorphins (natural pain-killing hormones in the brain), and the anti-inflammatory hormone, adrenal cortico-tropin. Acupuncture triggers the body to heal itself by producing hormones that reduce pain and inflammation. Acupuncture can then be used on an ongoing basis to prevent re-occurrence of arthritis once it has been successfully cured.
The National Arthritis Foundation medical director, Dr. John Klippel, vigorously supports acupuncture therapy for osteoarthritis of the knee. This endorsement followed a dramatic research study of patients suffering from osteoarthritis of the knee. This study involved 570 patients in Maryland and New York who had moderate to severe pain despite treatment with pain medicine. Researchers randomly assigned patients to get acupuncture, sham acupuncture, or education in addition to their pain pills. Those who got the acupuncture indicated a 40 percent reduction in pain and a nearly 40 percent improvement in function by the 14th week, which lasted through week 26.
Traditional Chinese Medicine does not recognize arthritis as one particular syndrome. Instead, it aims to treat the specific symptoms that are unique to each individual using a variety of techniques such as acupuncture, Chinese herbs, bodywork, lifestyle/dietary recommendations and energetic exercises to restore imbalances found in the body.
The most common types of arthritis are osteoarthritis and rheumatoid arthritis. Osteoarthritis is a condition in which the joint cartilage breaks down, causing pain and stiffness. Rheumatoid arthritis is a condition in which the body’s immune system attacks the thin membrane (synovium) that lines the joints, causing pain, swelling, inflammation, redness, heat and, if not stopped, joint destruction.
For more information in treatment of arthritis with acupuncture and Chinese medicine, please contact 415-355-1601 x12.
Diane Joswick, L.Ac., MSOM
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About American College of Traditional Chinese Medicine
American College of Traditional Chinese Medicine (ACTCM) has provided affordable, quality health care to the public and trained professionals in acupuncture, massage and Chinese medicine since 1980. In addition to its graduate curriculum, ACTCM offers continuing education, public education, community outreach and clinical services in acupuncture and herbal medicine. ACTCM has been the recipient of many awards for its curriculum, faculty and clinic, and has been voted “Best of the Bay” by both the San Francisco Weekly and the San Francisco Bay Guardian. ACTCM is accredited by the Accreditation Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine and is a private, nonprofit, 501(c)(3) tax-exempt organization.