Is Acupuncture Good for Treating Fibromyalgia?

There have been many research studies carried out and which support the use of acupuncture for treating various pain and fatigue disorders and certainly it seems that acupuncture has a lot to offer to those who suffer from fibromyalgia. Unfortunately because of the difference in an acupuncturist’s diagnosis and then treatment of disorders the studies that are carried out can be quite challenging. Where as with a normal western doctor they will usually prescribe the same treatment for everyone with the same disorder, whilst an acupuncturist will assess each patient in terms of their specific imbalance. For example, if say 10 people with fibromyalgia who are treated by an acupuncturist will more than likely give a different diagnosis for each one, and therefore will end up receiving their own customized treatment.

As there are over 6 million Americans who are now fighting against fibromyalgia and at present the western medical world can provide no treatment to relieve the symptoms of this disorder, it seems that more and more people are now turning to the successes being achieved by alternative medicines. Although there are dozens of alternative methods that purport to be effective in helping to fight against fibromyalgia, there are few that have scientific evidence to support these claims.

However in the March/April 2006 edition of the Alternative Therapies publication it has finally been proven that acupuncture has a significant therapeutic affect on treating this disorder and has also demonstrated an effective reversal of arthritis and many other chronic pain symptoms and it has especially been proven that acupuncture improves the painful symptoms associated with fibromyalgia.

Unfortunately because of the nature in which clinical research is carried out the studies need to include a uniformed subject group, a uniformed criteria and a uniformed treatment. However this poses somewhat of a quandary where acupuncture is concerned because of the many different diagnoses and treatments that will be employed by an individual acupuncturist. However a recent study reported in the Alternative Therapies publication was structured in such a way to satisfy the very stringent stipulations required by medical research. The research that was carried out in Southern California was set up so that the treatment was administered 2 times a week for a period of 2 months and the same acupuncture point combinations were used on each patient and only based on the diagnosis provided by a western medical practitioner and not the acupuncturist’s own form of diagnosis. The results reached were very significant, in that it demonstrated that with the regular treatment of acupuncture it decreased the pain levels being felt by the patient with no side effects.

However regardless of the level of pain felt by the patient who has been diagnosed with fibromyalgia that many are deterred from trying acupuncture because of the involvement of needles in the treatment. In fact the sensations that people feel when having acupuncture treatment is normally different from what they may expect.

When people are thinking of needles they conjure up images of them being used to draw blood or administer drugs etc. Needles used for such treatments are hollow and are completely different from the thin solid needles that are used for acupuncture.

The way that acupuncture helps in treatment of pain is that when some is uncomfortable or in pain their body is programmed to react to this discomfort by the tightening of the muscles in order to protect the area that is vulnerable. So if a patient is not relaxed during an acupuncture treatment then the needles will not provide them with the desired effect of relieving the pain.

As acupuncturists will be aware of this issue, they will go to great lengths to ensure that he patient is comfortable and relaxed. In fact a good experienced acupuncturist will be able to guide the needles to the desired destination without the patient being aware if at all of the treatment being carried out.

However, if you speak to people who have already been treated with acupuncture they will tell you that the treatment is not painful. But if you are considering have this form of treatment then it is a good idea to research as much as possible on the acupuncturist that you are looking to use. Some of the questions that you should be asking of them are as follows:-

Have they a license or are they fully certified?

Have they treated people previously with fibromyalgia, and if so how many?

For how long have they been practicing?

What sort of needles do they use? Are they the very thin silicone coated needles?

Do you have a problem in dealing with patients who are sensitive to needles?

Because many more people are becoming aware that acupuncture is painless and is one of the few alternative therapies available that has been clinically proven to reduce the pain of fibromyalgia and because it has not side effects which are associated with normal western medicine. So there really is no reason to wait any longer, but why not join the many thousands of people who have found acupuncture to be the best alternative for dealing with the pain caused by fibromyalgia.

Kerris Samson a work from home mum now residing in Spain and who has spent a vast amount of researching the different ways in which acupuncture can help in place of conventional western medicine when treating various forms of illness and ailments and also for use to relieve pain. Please visit if you would like to learn more.

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