How Does Acupuncture Work?
From the Western perspective, acupuncture works primarily through the central nervous system affecting the musculoskeletal, hormonal, and cardiovascular systems. Response depends upon the pattern being treated and the acupuncture points needled. Acupuncture is best known for its effects in relieving pain and discomfort. Acupuncture increases blood circulation, both locally and systemically. It increases the release of various neurotransmitters and neurohormones, some of which are endorphins, the body's own "pain killing" hormones. It relieves muscle spasms by stimulating nerves, both locally and distally. Scientists have measured the release of the body's natural morphine production to be as high as twenty to one hundred times normal levels and a three fold increase in the production of endorphins after acupuncture needle placement. Acupuncture increases the production and release of three mood elevating hormones, dopamine, serotonins, and neoepineprhine by thirty to fifty percent, improving the mental status of the patient. A better mental attitude decreases stress and increases the natural healing capabilities of the body.
From the Eastern perspective, disease is considered to be an imbalance in the flow of energy, "Qi" and in the flow of Blood through the body. Stimulating specific acupuncture points that correlate with the pattern diagnosis "rebalances" the body to a more normal state. The ultimate goal of the acupuncturist is to treat the "root" cause of the problem. If the root is addressed, the patient is more likely to respond, and remain in a healthier balance.
WHAT MEDICAL CONDITIONS RESPOND TO ACUPUNCTURE?
Almost every medical disease can benefit from acupuncture. I have listed the medical conditions that I have treated in my short career with the most common medical conditions listed first. Once again, I do not advocate that acupuncture is a panacea, but in at least 80% of my patient's, their medical conditions improved with the addition of acupuncture and herbs.
- Pain Management involving musculoskeletal disease (osteoarthritis, hip dysplasia, anterior cruciate ruptures, strained joints).
- Neurological Disorders (seizures, nerve paralysis, neck and back pain due to disc disease, phantom pain, degenerative myelopathy support).
- Cancer support with or without chemotherapy.
- Gastrointestinal Disorders (diarrhea, constipation, megacolon, inflammatory bowel disease, lack of appetite)
- Dermatological Disorders (dermatitis, lick granuloma).
- Cardiovascular and Heart Disease (cardiomyopathy, heart failure).
- Acute and chronic respiratory Disease (bronchitis, asthma, sinusitis, rhinitis).
- Immunological Disorders (autoimmune diseases).
HOW DO I SCHEDULE MY APPOINTMENT?
Dr. Craig sees her El Paso patients on Wednesdays in El Paso at the Animal Emergency Center located at 1220 Airway. For those clients who cannot be seen on Wednesdays, she is also available at Solano Animal Clinic located at 537 N Solano Dr in Las Cruces, NM.
Please call 575-526-1672 to schedule your appointment at either facility. We will provide you with a medical history questionnaire. It is a VERY extensive medical history form. Conventional Modern Western Medicine relies on laboratory and diagnostic tests to make a medical diagnosis. Traditional Chinese Medicine relies on medical history and physical examination observations to make a pattern diagnosis. The more accurate the medical history, the more accurate the pattern diagnosis. Additionally, please provide us with all pertinent medical records and/or recent laboratory or diagnostic test results.
To make better use of Dr. Craig's time with your pet at the initial consult, provide us with the completed medical history form and the pertinent medical records to us at least two days BEFORE your pet's consultation. You may email these documents to firstname.lastname@example.org or fax: 575-525-1605.
WHAT SHOULD I EXPECT IN THE FIRST APPOINTMENT?
The initial consultation involves an extensive review of the your pet's past and current medical history. To make the most of your time with Dr. Craig, please complete and return the extensive questionnaire BEFORE the consultation. Dr. Craig will perform a complete physical exam from both the Western and Eastern perspectives. Needle placement may or may not occur at the first appointment. Expect the first appointment to be a minimum of 90 minutes to as long as two hours. Additionally, you will be expected to help restrain your pet while Dr. Craig is examining your pet and placing the acupuncture needles.
HOW OFTEN ARE THE TREATMENTS? HOW MANY TREATMENTS ARE NECESSARY?
The initial consultation is ninety minutes to two hours long. Subsequent consultations are one hour appointments. Actual needle retention time is 20 to 30 minutes. The normal treatment protocol involves weekly visits for a minimum of four treatments. With a positive response, the duration between the treatments is lengthened to two week intervals for a few sessions, then three week intervals for a few sessions, then four week intervals, etc. The number of treatments is influenced by the type of disorder, the severity of the symptoms, and the patients response to the acupuncture sessions. For the majority of patients, regular maintenance sessions are every four to eight weeks. In some patients, treatments are suspended until the reappearance of symptoms. This is more common with patients who are amenable to taking herbal formulations.
HOW SOON SHOULD I EXPECT MY PET TO RESPOND TO THE ACUPUNCTURE SESSIONS?
The response to the acupuncture treatment and/or herbs is dependent on many variables. The two most important are chronicity and severity of the medical condition. The more chronic or more severe the condition, the more out of balance the body is, and the longer it will take to respond. In the majority of my patients, I have seen some improvement by the third or fourth treatment. If I do not see any improvement by the fourth session, acupuncture may not be beneficial for your pet's condition. Clients must be realistic about their expectations. We can't return normal function if the organ is not working. Acupuncture is not a panacea.
WHAT IS THE FEE STRUCTURE?
The initial consultation is $150.00. This includes the review of the medical records, medical history, a physical examination from both the Eastern and Western approaches. While needle placement is included, in some cases needles are not placed, the fee will be the same. Follow up consultations are $95.00. Additional fees are added for Laser therapy, supplement evaluation, and diet evaluation.
WHAT SHOULD I DO IF MY PET HAS A MEDICAL EMERGENCY?
DVMNeedles is not a full-service clinic. While acupuncture is helpful in emergency situations, conventional modern medicine is best. Consult with your primary veterinarian.