Conditions We Commonly See

Musculoskeletal Pain

Treating musculoskeletal pain is the forte of acupuncture. Pain is caused by several factors including:

  • Inflammation
  • Reduced or increased blood flow
  • Muscle spasm or tightness

None of these, however, causes the sensation of pain. Signals must be sent from the affected area to the brain’s pain centers. Acupuncture works on all of these factors by:

  • Clearing the heat of inflammation. The heat conducting needles “draw out” heat to reduce inflammation.
  • Regulating blood flow both locally and peripherally through vasoconstriction and dilation.
  • Strongly relaxing muscles by resetting ion potentials across the muscle membranes. This muscle relaxant quality is stronger and works faster than almost any other modality because the ion changes happen immediately.
  • Releasing endorphins and reducing blood flow to certain brain centers related to pain, both of which reduce the perception and experience of pain.

It should be noted that the strong anti-inflammatory and muscle relaxant qualities of acupuncture can not be attained using needleless techniques like laser, non-invasive electro stimulation, acupressure, or other non-invasive techniques often used by lesser trained practioners.

Chinese Herbal Medicine can also help pain by:

  • Nourishing the blood & Increasing blood flow
  • Clearing the heat of inflammation
  • Relaxing the muscles
  • Calming the spirit

Working in a chiropractic setting for 2 ½ years, I gained valuable experience treating all types of musculoskeletal pain including low back, midback, neck, shoulder, elbow, wrist (including carpal tunnel), hand, hip, knee, ankle, and foot (including bone spurs and plantar fascitis). Your treatment will be based on TCM pattern diagnosis. In almost all cases, pain level is reduced after 1-3 treatments. There is some diminishing return with structural changes in the body like joint disease, bone degeneration or structural abnormalities, but even in these cases, pain can usually be reduced and further degeneration can be slowed or stopped.

Infertility & ART Success – Specially Trained for Fertility!

A hand in 290 pregnancies and counting…

There are protocols to treat infertility related to unexplained causes, menstrual irregularity, high or low hormone levels, advanced age, endometriosis, fibroids/cysts, polycystic ovaries (PCOS), partial tubal blockage, and low sperm count and motility. TCM can also be used to treat habitual miscarriage. If you are seeking treatment with just TCM, we strongly suggest you read the book:

Making Babies: A Proven 3 Month Program for Maximum Fertility by Sami David and Jill Blakeway which very clearly outlines our philosophy and approach.

We closely follow the protocols outlined and feel like our patients who read the book are better consumers of both western medicine and TCM.

Several recent research studies have also shown that standard acupuncture protocols can be used to increase the success rate of invitro-fertilization. In fact several well known IVF specialty clinics now require all patients to go through the acupuncture protocol prior to transfer. These protocols can also increase the effectiveness of IUI. Standard protocols for enhancing assisted techniques usually require 6-12 treatments.

If you seek treatment for infertility or enhancing assisted techniques, we will discuss all of your options thoroughly and proceed in the manner you feel most comfortable with. With TCM only, 3-9 months is a good test. You should feel improvements within your first 2-4 menstrual cycles and long term treatment should feel intuitively appropriate by the time you reach that decision. Male issues can usually be treated with herbs only and within 3 – 6 months.

The cost of aggressive treatment with TCM can range from $1,000-$2,000. Compared with $10,000 – $20,000 for IVF, TCM provides a humanistic, nurturing, and cost-effective approach to treating infertility.

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In our opinion everyone with fibromyalgia should try acupuncture because in our experience, it consistently helps with the associated pain and sleep difficulty. In fact, the “tender points” common in fibro are actually acupuncture points! When it helps, you should expect fast relief from pain, usually in 2-3 treatments and a course of 4-8 often reinforces the pain relief and improved sleep. Occasional tune-up treatments after that.


Like many other chronic conditions, the metaphors of TCM often allow for better diagnosis and treatment than western medicine. First we try to establish the cause of your headaches: stress, diet & lifestyle, lack of sleep, food reaction, or hormone issues. We then use our tools: acupuncture, herbs if necessary, and/or diet and lifestyle changes to create balance. If we do, the headaches will improve quickly and dramatically. Expect 3-8 treatments and herbs if necessary.

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Stress & Anxiety

Research shows acupuncture has a strong effect on neurotransmitters. Clinically, patients find acupuncture treatments extremely relaxing because of its endorphin rush induced drowsy euphoria. Most patients find treatments “more relaxing than a massage.” The goal of treatment is to get this calm feeling of well being to last long term through a series of treatments, diet and lifestyle recommendations, and herbs if necessary. Expect 4-8 treatments total and occasional tune-ups if needed.

Allergies & Sinusitis

Allergies and sinusitis are relatively easy to treat with Acupuncture and Chinese Herbal Medicine. TCM uses metaphors that in many ways allow better diagnosis, differentiation and treatment of allergies than western medical treatments. TCM uses ideas like:

  • Dampness – chronic drip and excessive phlegm
  • Dryness – itching and redness
  • Heat – redness, sore throat, and rashes
  • Stagnation – chronic congestion
  • Wind – sneezing, coughing and moving rashes
  • Qi – general energy level

TCM also thinks about the level of entry of allergens:

  • Sinus – chronic drip, sneezing, tightness, congestion, chronic infection
  • Eyes – Redness, dryness, itching, and chronic tearing
  • Ears – dampness, vertigo, chronic infection
  • Throat – sore or itchy throat
  • Lungs – cough, wheezing, difficulty breathing
  • Digestive System – food allergies, indigestion, etc

Acupuncture and Chinese Herbs have a predictable effect on all of these qualities and levels and can be used to quickly relieve allergy symptoms. Your treatment will be based on TCM pattern diagnosis. You should feel relief quickly, though full relief may take some time depending on degree and chronicity of symptoms. Plan on 3-6 treatments for most conditions.

Constipation/Diarrhea & IBS

Acupuncture has a regulating effect on smooth muscle and can effect digestive function quickly. In our experience, digestion regulation is one of acupunctures strengths. Expect 3-6 treatments, dietary guidance, and herbs if necessary.

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Acid Reflux/Gerd

Traditional Chinese Medicine considers Acid Reflux/GERD to be “rebellious stomach qi.” Elegant and poetic, unless you are suffering from your rebellious stomach! In a healthy person, the stomach qi or energy goes downward, smoothly passing the stomach contents to the small intestines. When the stomach qi “rebels” it moves upwards and cause reflux/GERD. The stomach qi can easily be redirected using acupuncture, dietary changes, and herbs if necessary. We can usually find a balance which allows some indulgences. Expect 4-6 treatments and herbs if necessary.

PMS & Menopause

The metaphors of TCM correspond elegantly to the female reproductive system, phasic temperature shifts, and lifetime changes in menstruation. Acupuncture strongly regulates the smooth muscles of the reproductive system to treat cramping and other menstrual related pain like breast tenderness, back pain and headache. Chinese herbs can effectively mimic hormones and can be used in lieu of hormone replacement or to regulate the cycle to prevent PMS. As a fertility specialist and one of the first 50 practitioners certified by the ABORM, I have 10 years of experience regulating women’s cycles and hormone levels. Expect 4-8 treatments and herbs if necessary.


General Medicine

The World Health Organization recognizes TCM’s ability to treat 43 common clinical conditions:

Gastrointestinal Disorders

Gastrointestinal Disorders

Food Allergies
Peptic ulcer
Chronic diarrhea
Gastrointestinal weakness

Urogenital Disorders

Urogenital Disorders

Stress incontinence
Urinary tract infections
Sexual dysfunction

Gynecological Disorders

Gynecological Disorders

Irregular, heavy, or painful menstruation
Infertility in men and women

Respiratory Disorders

Respiratory Disorders


Disorders of the Bones, Muscles, and Joints & Nervous System

Disorders of the Bones, Muscles, and Joints & Nervous System

Migraine Headaches
Low Back, Neck, and Shoulder Pain

Circulatory Disorders

Circulatory Disorders

Angina pectoris

Emotional and Psychological Disorders

Emotional and Psychological Disorders

Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD)



Many types of drug addiction

General Medicine

General Medicine

Eye, ear, nose and throat disorders
Cold and Flu Symptom Relief

The National Institutes of Health Consensus Statement on Acupuncture states: “…promising results have emerged, for example, showing efficacy of acupuncture in adult postoperative and chemotherapy nausea and vomiting and in postoperative dental pain. There are also situations such as addiction, stroke rehabilitation, HEADACHE, menstrual cramps, tennis elbow, FIBROMYALGIA, myofascial pain, osteoarthritis, low back pain, CARPAL TUNNEL SYNDROME, and ASTHMA in which acupuncture may be useful as an adjunct treatment or an acceptable alternative to be included in a comprehensive management program.”