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Should I continue my acupuncture treatments?


#1

I take good care of myself and thought I was doing everything right. Even so, I got really sick a couple of years ago. My hair had started thinning before this, but that's the only symptom I had. Then I came down with what I thought was the worst case of the flu I've ever day. I never recovered and have not been the same since. Two months after the flu, my heart started thumping. I ended up in the emergency room 3 different times. They didn't find anything wrong with me on my first visit. They said I had pneumonia on my second visit. They gave me antibiotics, which didn't do a thing. My third visit (to a different hospital)was no more productive than the first two visits. They did blood tests, took chest x-rays and did and ekg each time. On my third trip to the emeregency room, they also did an echocardiogram, but still found nothing wrong. I didn't have insurance at that time, so they sent me to a clinic which was just horrible. All they wanted to do was give me more antibiotics and take more x-rays. I got fed up and never went back.

Since that time, I have been to several different alternative health professionals. I've been told I have yeast, parasites, low thyroid, stress, etc. I finally decided to give acupuncture a try. I had heard good things about the acupuncturist I am seeing and I did a lot of research on him online before making my first appointment. He looked at my tongue and did the pulse diagnosis and said I have yeast, parasites, issues with my kidneys, liver, hiatal hernia, vagus nerve imbalance, yang deficiency, and something to do with my bile.

Besides the acupuncture, he has also used the Rife Machine, microcurrent therapy, electroacupuncture, craniosacral therapy, chiropractic treatments, and energy healing on me. I have had 7 treatments, so far. Before beginning the acupuncture, my symptoms were heart thumping, pain under both sides of the ribs, pain under left armpit, tingling on the top and back of my head, a strange feeling in my brain (possibly swelling?), digestive issues, muscle twitches on the left side of my body, numbness on left side of my body, occasional head jerking, mucus in stools (which are also sticky), right side kidney pain, pain in ovaries, pain around both breasts, ear pain and itching, abdominal bloating, tightness in my chest which feels like I'm walking around with a bowling ball stuck in there, naval pain, occasional shortness of breath and wheezing, and my weight quickly jumped from 105 pounds to about 150. (I'm 44 years old and 5'3".)

I still have all of those symptoms, but after 7 acupuncture treatments, I now have nausea, the weird feeling in my brain has gotten worse, the squeezing feeling that starts at my diaphragm and ends about 4 inches above my naval has gotten worse, the heart thumping is worse, hot flashes that just started this week, and I had a period that started a week and half early and lasted for 21 days. My acupuncturist used a point to stop the bleeding and it did stop the very next day.

Should I be having even more symptoms and feeling this badly after 7 treatments? I like this acupuncturist very much. He is very kind and compassionate, but now I'm having doubts as to whether he is as good as I first thought. I'm not sure whether I should continue my treatments and I'm about at my wits end. I just don't know what to do anymore.


#2

Before I formulate a recommendation, what do your western tests show (blood work, thyroid panels, etc.)? If you haven't had them, please do so if at all possible. Even though western diagnostic exams are not necessary for acupuncture treatment it is good to know what you are working with in a measurable way. Have you had western exams performed outside of what would have been done in the ER? A thyroid panel would be crucial information even if you do not intend to take western medications.



#3

No, I haven't had any western exams other than what I had in the ER. I have only had insurance for about a month and a half, and I did not want to go back to that clinic. I have to admit that I am fearful of returning to western medicine after the unpleasant experiences with the emergency room and the clinic. I definitely do not want to be treated with western medicine, but if a thyroid panel is crucial, I will work up the courage to do so. Is acupuncture an effective treatment for thyroid conditions? What about perimenopause?


Thank you for taking the time to respond to my questions. I appreciate it very much.


#4

Western medicine is very useful when it comes to advanced treatments (surgery, etc.) and diagnostics. Just because you have western exams does not mean that you have to utilize western treatments. The tests are useful, however, because a lot of "alternative" practitioners will say people have all kinds of problems which is not helpful or scientific without the information to support their diagnoses. It seems somewhat clear from many of the symptoms you list that you have a thryoid imbalance, most likely low (hypo), and western exams should be used to verify this. Even if you use alternative treatments you will still want a baseline exam so you have something to compare your progress to. Otherwise, you only have your symptoms to go on, which are not always an effective way of guaging progress.


With regards to your additional symptoms since acupuncture this is difficult to comment on without knowing the points and other treatments the practitioner is using in detail. Generally people should be feeling at least somewhat better within 3-5 treatments and thyroid conditions, hormonal imbalances, menopause, etc. are all treatable. A thyroid condition will not be fully treated in that timeframe but some of the stronger symptoms should be decreasing within 7 treatments. Without having seen you myself, and without western exams to back up the diagnosis, however, it is very hard for me to say more on the subject.


I would first get the thyroid panel and basic blood work done to see what you are working with. Then talk the results over with your practitioner and see what he thinks. If you are not happy with the course of treatment certainly by 9-12 treatments, consult with another practitioner. There are many ways to approach different problems with acupuncture and sometimes another approach works better for a given individual.



#5

I have an appointment with my acupuncturist tomorrow and I will discuss the things you recommended. I don't have a general practitioner, but I will look for one this week so I have can get these tests ordered. Perhaps, I will have a better experience this time around, since I now have insurance. Again, I thank you for your advice.


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