Acupuncture for pain

Acupuncture for pain

Many Australians live with chronic pain as an everyday, accepted part of life, and there is no need!

Acupuncture has been scientifically and clinically validated as a viable intervention which may be able to relieve the symptoms and occurrence of:

  • Headaches & Migraines
  • Joint pain
  • recurring pain from previous injuries
  • nerve pain
  • acute pain from recent trauma
  • osteoarthritis and most other painful conditions  

Acupuncture has been scientifically and empirically documented to promote the release of the body's own natural pain killers (specifically beta-endorphin, dynorphin and met-enkephalin).

This coupled with Acupuncture's mechanism for promoting circulation to an affected area, your body may improve its rate of healing with better quality tissues while managing its own pain without the use of pain medications.

Is there scientific evidence supporting the use of acupuncture for pain relief?

Absolutely! In the past two decades the amount of good quality scientific research into the use of acupuncture for pain relief and its other applications has soared. In fact, acupuncture for pain relief is so well accepted in Australia that it is incorporated into many other allied health professions under the term Dry Needling, which, in Chinese Medicine is known as Ashi  Acupuncture; loosely translated to needle the sore spot. 

But you don't have to take our word for it. We've included  at the bottom of the page links to a few (of the many) scientific research papers supporting the use of acupuncture for pain.

When could I expect my pain to lessen or resolve after receiving acupuncture?

As with all medical interventions individual results will vary, though typically we see an improvement between when you walk in the door and when you walk out. Again, generally speaking, multiple sessions are typically required though this differs depending on your individual complaint. 

That being said, it is rare that a chronic complaint would be resolved after a single session, but in most cases where the treatment plan is adhered to we see measurable positive outcomes within a fairly quick time-frame. 

Will it hurt to receive acupuncture at the site of pain?

Generally speaking acupuncture is largely painless and tolerated well by the majority of patients. Sometimes, if the physical area of the body is so inflamed and painful, the patient may not wish to have that area itself worked on, or it may be too painful to position the patient in an adequate way to access certain parts of the body. In these instances, because of the ways acupuncture works, it is possible to have an effect on one part of the body while working on another. For example, acupuncturists often treat low back pain by using acupuncture points located on the hands and forearm. 

That said, in the vast majority of cases treatment occurs at the site which is the focus of treatment as well as the inclusion of distal and adjacent acupuncture points. 

It is highly unusual for patients to experience any significant pain or discomfort from or during treatment itself and acupuncture is largely regarded as a comfortable and relaxing procedure.

Want to know more about Acupuncture for pain or speak with your expert Acupuncturist in Brisbane?

Our expert Brisbane acupuncturists are happy to speak with you over the phone if you have any questions. Call the Clinic on or alternatively you can ask us online.

Links to further reading about acupuncture for pain.

A Cochrane review published in 2011 titled Acupuncture for pain: An overview of cochrane reviews demonstrated in its findings:

        "Several Cochrane reviews of acupuncture for a wide range of pain conditions have recently been published. All of these reviews were of high quality. Their results suggest that acupuncture is effective for some but not all types of pain."

Citation: Lee, M.S. & Ernst, E. Chin. J. Integr. Med. (2011) 17: 187. Link to article 

A Meta-analysis titled Meta-Analysis: Acupuncture for low back pain, first published in 2005 concludes:

    "Acupuncture effectively relieves chronic low back pain"

Citation: Manheimer E, White A, Berman B, et al. Meta-Analysis: Acupuncture for Low Back Pain. Ann Intern Med. 2005;142:651–663. doi: 10.7326/0003-4819-142-8-200504190-00014 Link to article

A systematic review first published in 2012 titled Acupuncture for chronic pain: Individual patient data meta-analysis concludes:

        "Acupuncture is effective for the treatment of chronic pain and is therefore a reasonable referral option. Significant differences between true and sham acupuncture indicate that acupuncture is more than a placebo."

Citation: Vickers AJ, Cronin AM, Maschino AC, et al. Acupuncture for Chronic Pain: Individual Patient Data Meta-analysis. Arch Intern Med. 2012;172(19):1444–1453. doi:10.1001/archinternmed.2012.3654 Link to article

How long will my acupuncture appointment take

Appointments for acupuncture typically run for 45 minutes.  Allow up to 60 minutes for your first appointment.

What to expect at your first appointment

At your first appointment your practitioner will collect a detailed case history of your health and complaint. Prognosis, your individualised treatment plan, and expected outcomes will be discussed and you will receive acupuncture treatment, lifestyle advice and exercises relative to your complaint

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