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The Qi House FAQ

How Does Acupuncture Work?

Acupuncture works by stimulating acupuncture points, specific areas located near or on the surface of the skin.  These points are able to change the biochemical and physiological conditions in the body.  Acupuncture points are designated areas of electrical sensitivity, which makes inserting needles at these points ideal for stimulating sensory receptors which stimulates nerves that transmit impulses to the hypothalamic-pituitary system in the brain. The hypothalamus-pituitary glands release neurotransmitters and endorphins, the body's natural pain-killing hormones.  Endorphins are a pivotal part of the hormonal system.  This is why acupuncture is so effective in treating conditions such as back pain, arthritis, PMS and infertility.  The substances released by acupuncture serve to relax the body and regulate serotonin in the brain.  This affects emotional states.  Additional benefits include reduced inflammation, better circulation and  relieved muscle spasms.   Also,  an accompanying increased T-cell count gives support to the immune system.

It has been found that  acupuncture activates three central mechanisms in the body relating to the releasing  of pain-reducing opioids, the altering of brain chemistry to improve sensation and function, and the changing of blood flow to affected areas to reduce pain and restore function.

Are There Different Styles of Acupuncture?

Originating in China, acupuncture is used throughout the world.  Over time, different theories have given rise to varying methods.  Though the foundational theoretical principles of acupuncture remain, the different methods of acupuncture widely vary in terms of technique and diagnosis. While there is no evidence that one method is more effective than another, the patient should understand as much as possible about the prescribed treatment.  The following is a summary of the different styles:

 

Traditional Chinese Acupuncture: Traditional Chinese Acupuncture, part of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), is the most prevalent style of acupuncture used in the U.S.

Japanese Acupuncture: This style uses the same meridians and points as Chinese acupuncture but in a toned down  manner, using fewer and thinner needles with less stimulation.

 

Korean Hand Acupuncture: This method employs points in the hand that correspond to areas of the body and to particular disfunctions.

 

Auricular Acupuncture: This style is mostly  used for controlling pain along with drug, alcohol, and nicotine addiction.  It employs  points in the ear that correspond to areas of the body and to particular disfunctions.

Medical Acupuncture:  This is acupuncture performed by a western Medical Doctor (MD).  Acupuncture requirements for western doctors are generally less demanding than for non-MDs.  Like other acupuncturists, Medical doctors usually use sterilized, stainless steel needles; however, they also sometimes use injections.

Veterinary Acupuncture:  This is a surgical procedure that may only be performed by a licensed Doctor of Veterinary Medicine.

What will happen on the first visit?

During your initial consultation, Dr. Freddy will evaluate the patient's overall health including current symptoms and any treatment that been received.  Detailed information will be gathered about the patient's medical history as well as diet, digestive system, sleeping patterns and emotional state.  Family medical history will also be examined. The goal is to identify the problem areas that are causing the main issue as well as improve overall health.

 

There are 365 specific acupuncture points on the body  that affect the functioning of different organs, and there are an unlimited number of non-specific points that have no organ association.  Dr. Freddy may, over the course of a few sessions, select different points for stimulation  as the patient's condition evolves.

 What Preparations Should One Make Before Treatment?

Dr. Freddy suggests that the patient wear loose-fitting, comfortable clothing when receiving acupuncture treatment.  He may need to access areas on the torso, arms and legs.  Arriving at least a few minutes before the appointment will allow the patient to be more at ease, a beneficial state for treatment.  Here are some other key rules to follows.

  • Avoid eating a big meal within one hour of  appointment.

  • Do not fast for more than six hours before  appointment.

  • Avoid alcohol, tobacco, food or drinks that color your tongue just before or following a treatment.

  •  Do not engage in any vigorous exercise within the hour before treatment.

  • Avoid wearing any metallic jewelry, watches,  earrings, makeup or nail polish.     

  • Refrain from using  perfumes, colognes or strongly scented cosmetics.

What Does Acupuncture Treat?

As outlined by the World Health Organization, the following are some of the more common ailments that may be treated by Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine :
  • Upper Respiratory Tract: Acute sinusitis, acute rhinitis, common cold, acute tonsillitis

  • Respiratory System: Acute bronchitis, bronchial asthma (most effective in children and in patients without complicating diseases)

  • Disorders of the Eye: Acute conjunctivitis, central retinitis, myopia (in children), cataract (without complications)

  • Disorders of the Mouth: Toothache, post-extraction pain, gingivitis, acute and chronic pharyngitis

  • Gastrointestinal Disorders: Spasms of esophagus and cardia, hiccough, gastroptosis, acute and chronic gastritis, gastric hyperacidity, chronic duodenal ulcer (pain relief), acute duodenal ulcer (without complications), acute and chronic colitis, acute bacillary dysentery, constipation, diarrhea, paralytic ileus

  • Neurological and Musculoskeletal Disorders: Headache and migraine, trigeminal neuralgia, facial palsy (early stage, i.e. within three to six months), pareses following a stroke, peripheral neuropathies, sequelae of poliomyelitis (early stage, i.e., within six months), Meniere's disease, neurogenic bladder dysfunction, nocturnal enuresis, intercostal neuralgia, cervicobrachial syndrome, "frozen shoulder," "tennis elbow," sciatica, low back pain, osteoarthritis

 

What Other Problems Does Acupuncture Treat?

Pain-related conditions are mostly what acupuncturists in the U.S. have been treating. However, acupuncture and Oriental medicine has had success with many  other conditions including the following:
  • Eye, Ear, Nose & Throat Disorders: Sinusitis, sore throat, hay fever, earache, nerve deafness, ringing in the ears, dizziness, poor eyesight

  • Circulatory Disorders: High blood pressure, angina pectoris, arteriosclerosis, anemia

  • Gastrointestinal Disorders: Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), spastic colon, colitis, constipation, diarrhea, food allergies, ulcers, gastritis, abdominal bloating, hemorrhoids

  • Gynecological and Genitourinary Disorders: Premenstrual syndrome (PMS); irregular, heavy or painful menstruation; endometriosis; menopause; fibroids; chronic bladder infection; complications in pregnancy; morning sickness; kidney stones; impotence; infertility (men and women); sexual dysfunction

  • Immune Disorders: Candida, chronic fatigue, HIV and AIDS, Epstein Barr virus, allergies, lupus, multiple sclerosis (MS), hepatitis

  • Addictions: Smoking, drugs, alcohol, food

  • Emotional and Psychological Disorders: Anxiety, insomnia, depression, stress

  • Musculoskeletal and Neurological Disorders: Arthritis, neuralgia, sciatica, back pain, bursitis, tendonitis, stiff neck, Bell's palsy, trigeminal neuralgia, headaches and migraines, stroke, cerebral palsy, polio, sprains, muscle spasms, shingles

  • Respiratory Disorders: Asthma, emphysema, bronchitis, colds and flu

  • Miscellaneous: Chemotherapy/radiation side effects, diabetes, dermatological disorders, weight control

Can One Get A Disease From Acupuncture?

No. Diseases can not be contracted from properly administered acupuncture.  Licensed, board certified acupuncturists are trained to prevent the transmission of diseases.  Similar to a hospital environment, acupuncturists apply only sterile, one-time use disposable needles that are FDA approved.  Modern standards have just about eliminated any risk of infection through acupuncture.

Are There Any Side Effects To  Acupuncture?

Acupuncture is a highly safe form of medicine; however, there are a few risks. These include bruising, fainting, muscle spasms, bleeding, nerve damage (extremely rare) and punctured organs (extremely rare).

Acupuncture points are located on or close to the skin's surface, but needles can be inserted from 1/16 to a few inches deep. The depth of insertion depends on the nature of the location and condition being addressed, the patients' size, age, and constitution, as well as the acupuncturist's style and training.

There is little sensitivity to the insertion of acupuncture needles. One reason is that they are much finer than those used for injections and blood tests - 25 to 50 times thinner than hypodermic needles. Further, the actual insertion is done very quickly. While some feel nothing at all, others experience a brief moment of discomfort, sometimes followed by a mild sensation of cramping, tingling or numbness (desirable sensations known as "attaining qi"). The needles are left in place for 20 to 90 minutes. Most people find the experience relaxing, and some even fall asleep during sessions.

How Much Does Acupuncture Cost?

The cost of acupuncture treatment depends on the type and the length of therapy needed.  Ability to pay should not be a factor if you need to be treated. Please contact our office. Our staff will gladly answer questions and assist any way we can.

To find out if your health insurance can be used for our services, go to the insurance verification section of our website by clicking on the appropriate button above.  Fill out the form and click  on the appropriate button to submit your information.  Call our office if you are unsure about your coverage. Our staff will be happy to assist you.

You can also call the phone number on the back of your insurance card. We recommend asking your insurance company the following questions before contacting our office:

  • Is acupuncture covered by my plan?

  • Is a referral required from my Primary Care Provider (PCP)?

  • Is reimbursement limited to a particular network or panel of providers?

  • Is reimbursement limited only to Medical Doctors (MD) who perform acupuncture and not applicable to licensed acupuncturists?

  • Is pre-authorization required?

  • Am I limited to specific diagnosis codes (only specific sessions)? If so, what are they?

  • Is there an annual deductible? If so, how much is the deductible? How much has been met?

  • If I am covered for acupuncture, then may I receive written proof/authorization?

  • Is there a maximum yearly allowance for acupuncture? Maximum number of visits? Specific dollar amount? What percentage is covered?