I am a physician that combines Western Medicine with acupuncture for the treatment of disease. I have practiced medical acupuncture and internal medicine in Portland since 1993. My education and training is included in my Curriculum Vitae page.
What is acupuncture?
Acupuncture is the insertion of needles into the body for the treatment of disease. It has been practiced in China for at least 4500 years. Currently, it is practiced throughout the world. For a quarter of the world's population it is more commonly used than Aspirin. You can read more about acupuncture in the Acupuncture Introduction page.
How can acupuncture help me?
It is probably best to call the office regarding your particular problem and ask the staff whether or not acupuncture is effective for you. The Chinese theory of acupuncture suggests disease results from abnormal changes in the balance and flow of energy in the body. Acupuncture attempts to reverse these changes by restoring the normal flow and balance of energy through the insertion and manipulation of needles on points along the meridians. The Chinese used this technique for essentially all diseases. Obviously, acupuncture is not a cure-all. Scientific studies are being conducted to verify its effectiveness. At present in the United States, acupuncture has been used mainly to treat pain. In November 1997, the National Institutes of Health reviewed all of the trials and studies conducted on acupuncture to date and concluded that acupuncture has been shown to be effective in a variety of diseases including pain control, stroke rehabilitation, and hyper-emesis of pregnancy. A number of scientific articles have been published over the past 10 years that have demonstrated the effectiveness of acupuncture in a number of diseases including back, neck, knee, and headaches. You can read these articles by going to the research links provided in the Acupuncture Research page.
What is it like to receive acupuncture treatment at my clinic?
Most people come to my office through referrals from friends or family who have experienced good results with acupuncture. Some patients are referred to acupuncture by their physicians. You can find our location and office hours by going to the Appointment Information page. At the first visit, I will interview and examine the patient and then decide whether or not acupuncture is useful for the patient. If acupuncture is an appropriate modality, I will recommend a series of acupuncture treatments. The number of treatments varies with the clinical setting, but usually within a series of five treatments the patient should begin to feel better.
Most people are concerned about the needles. Usually, there is just a momentary pinch. In some cases the needles cannot be felt at all. The needles themselves are sterile, disposable, and made of surgical grade stainless steel. They are FDA approved. The depth of needle insertion varies depending upon the acupuncture point. Most needles are inserted just below the skin, but some may be as deep as three inches. When the acupuncture point is reached, there is a feeling of "dechi." Once the needles have been inserted, they are left in place for 20 minutes and then removed.