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Deep Needling Spinning & Electricity - AGONY Pain After Acupuncture


I started acupuncture for some back problems of an annular tear and slight herniation. He immediately put me on the 3 day a week plan with herbal tea and his product line of lotion. I did this for three weeks and felt great as though I was healing. He used the electric treatment every time on lumbar needles. Sometimes when he would spin them my problem areas they would hurt so bad and he would tell me it's normal and there are blockages and he has to get to them so deal with pain. He would joke about his patients cussing when he twisted needle to deeper level but it was necessary to help blockages. Then I stopped going so much when I spent more than my own mortgage in one month and returned with some back flare ups. The acupuncturist scolded me for not continuing to come for 3 visits per week and said "let me fix you" meaning it was going to hurt but it was necessary to be healed.

He used deep needling on at least 5 in my back and said it had to hurt for him to get to the right level. It was agony. Then used the eclectic machine for the lumbar needles for about 25 mins. This sounds crazy to me now but I trusted him from the success of the weeks prior!

That night I was in worst pain of my life! A 15 on the pain scale of 1-10 to say the least. I was begging my husband to take me to ER! I was throwing myself on the bed to the floor crawling in sheer agony trying to escape the pain. I had sever deep nerve pain, burning, stabbing and sharp shooting pains that I couldn't even walk. All through my butt on both sides. The pain was so bad I couldn't control my body temperature. Neither ice nor heat helped and both hurt. I couldn't get away from the pain and this happened for the next 3 nights. Luckily I got an appt with my spine dr prescribed gabapentin for nerve pain until my MRI results come back. That has helped biut not cured me and is starting to lose its effect.

i am unable to drive or go to work. I know this is from acupuncture bc I've never had this problem before that day and now I can't escape it. Does anybody know what is going on? At first I thought it was sciatica but tonight I have nerve pains going up my back. I'm on day 8 and the pain at night is excruciating and I'm completely disabled during the day! I have 4 children a successful business, a husband that need me and employees that need me!!!!


Issues like this have unfortunately come up numerous times in the forums and I&#39ve given my thoughts on the issues in many of those posts. To save you time, the easiest answer is to see another practitioner. There are significant technical a/or theoretical differences between practitioners, so it&#39s never really an issue of right or wrong or good and bad in the clearest sense. My general bias is away from deeper needling and/or techniques with strong manipulation (i.e. I firmly do not believe that you have to use those techniques to get results, in fact I firmly believe they are more often counterproductive, due to the tension that develops in the patient thus blocking circulation, than they are helpful) and I&#39m biased away from too frequent treatments (i.e. I firmly believe that treating more than once a week except in the most acute of cases rarely leads to any better results (or quicker) than treating once a week but it does further line the pockets of practitioners, I also firmly believe much like above that more than once a week can actually be counterproductive to healing because of overstimulating the areas). Now these are my biases and how I run my practice, so to each their own. But if it were me, I would find another practitioner.

Unfortunately at your point now with such strong tissue and nerve irritation, acupuncture done well is probably the only thing that can dig you back out of this.

Pain in leg after acupuncture

Hi Chad,

Thank you for your fast response! I chose what I thought was best in the city. Can you advise me on how to find a new one considering the state I&#39m in I don&#39t have room for error. I&#39m in Memphis if you have any referrals?

Are there any terms for what I have been and going through?


Unfortunately I don&#39t have any strong recommendations in Memphis, but I will ask around. Generally I prefer practitioners who also do tuina (Chinese Medical Massage) and/or also have massage therapy training. Outside of that people who practice the Japanese style of acupuncture (much less common) can be quite good as well. It&#39s biased no doubt, but I have found that I prefer those styles personally and clinically I&#39ve always seen them being higher quality practitioners.

I&#39ve looked around a bit and I will direct message you one practitioner that -may- be good, I don&#39t know them personally, but there background seems decent.


I sometimes recommend a native English speaking practitioner. This may ruffle some feathers but language barriers and cultural clashes with Americans vs pain thresholds and treatment styles can be harshly different. I&#39m not sure which you saw but I&#39m simply making making a blanket statement there. I feel like when I&#39ve heard stories like this, it&#39s often from having seen a Chinese practitioner. Again, it&#39s a blanket statement.

Japanese style acupuncture is often notoriously a very gentle by nature style of acupuncture if you are now (understandably) needle shy.

Chinese or Japanese, I too suggest high tailing it a different practitioner. It should always be to your comfort level and you should always have veto power if it&#39s too much.

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