Clinic Location: 4737 N. Clark Street, Ground Floor
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Contact and Clinic Hours

Appointments are available on the following days each week. Please call the landline at 773.506.8971 or email at tcmman1@gmail.com to schedule.

Sunday: 2 – 7PM
Monday: 2 – 8PM
Tuesday: 2 – 8PM
Wednesday: 12 - 6PM
Thursday: 2 – 8PM

Some Health Issues We Treat
Friday
Sep162016

Dry Needling is an Amateur and Potentially Dangerous Form of Acupuncture

The American Society of Acupuncturists has released its position paper on the new technique practiced by physical therapists in some states, which they are calling, "Dry Needling" but is really just an attempt to co-opt and diminish acupuncture, while potentially endangering their patients. 

Here is the position paper in its entirety:

ASA Position on Dry Needling

 

The American Society of Acupuncturists (“ASA”) opposes the illegal and unsafe practice of acupuncture. “Dry needling” is a pseudonym for acupuncture that has been adopted by physical therapists, chiropractors, and other health providers who lack the legal ability to practice acupuncture within their scope of practice. This strategy allows these groups to skirt safety, testing, and certification standards put into place for the practice of acupuncture. Dry Needling is a style of needling treatment within the greater field of acupuncture. The practice of “acupuncture” includes any insertion of an acupuncture needle for a therapeutic purpose. Acupuncture training has always included both traditional and modern medical understandings.

Anatomically, “trigger points” and “acupuncture points” are synonymous, and acupuncture has targeted trigger points for over 2,000 years. “Dry needling” is indistinguishable from acupuncture since it uses the same FDA-regulated medical device specifically defined as an “acupuncture needle,” treats the same anatomical points, and is intended to achieve the same therapeutic purposes as acupuncture. 

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) defines the acupuncture needle as a Class II medical device, and has explicitly stated that the sale of acupuncture needles “must be clearly restricted to qualified practitioners of acupuncture as determined by the States.” As “dry needling” is acupuncture, it presents the same inherent risks including but not limited to perforation of the lungs and other internal organs, nerve damage, and infection. Recent reports of serious and potentially life-threatening injuries associated with “dry needling” include pneumothoraces and spinal cord injury. These and other injuries support the statement that “dry needling” presents a substantial threat to public safety when performed without adequate education, training, and independent competency examination. Adequate training and competency testing are essential to public safety.

In addition to biomedical training, licensed acupuncturists receive at least 1365 hours of acupuncture-specific training, including 705 hours of acupuncture-specific didactic material and 660 hours of supervised clinical training. Further, many states also require even physicians wishing to practice acupuncture to have substantial training. The American Academy of Medical Acupuncture (AAMA) has set the industry standard for a physician to practice entry level acupuncture at 300 hours of postdoctoral training with passage of an examination by an independent testing board. This standard presumes extensive, pre-requisite training in invasive procedures [including underlying structures, contraindications for skin puncture, clean needle technique, anticipated range of patient responses to invasive technique, etc.], the differential diagnosis of presenting conditions, clinical infection-control procedures in the context of invasive medicine, management of acute office and medical emergencies, and advanced knowledge of human physiology and evidence based medicine. The AAMA expects that physicians choosing to incorporate acupuncture into practice will pursue lifelong learning, including formal and self-directed programs.

In contrast, there are no independent, agency-accredited training programs for “dry needling,” no standardized curriculum, no means of assessing the competence of instructors in the field, and no independently administered competency examinations.

Neither physical therapy nor chiropractic entry-level training includes any meaningful preparation for the practice of invasive therapeutic modalities such as the insertion of acupuncture needles. Training in these programs is generally limited to external therapeutic modalities. In some states, however, physical therapists and others have begun inserting acupuncture needles and practicing acupuncture with 12-24 hours of classroom time and little to no hands-on training or supervision. This is being done under the name “dry needling.”

Physical therapists and chiropractors without acupuncture included in their state practice acts have, in some cases, been authorized to perform dry needling by their own regulatory boards’ non-binding guidelines or through administrative rulemaking. Such actions often occur even when the statutory practice act adopted by the state legislature lacks any legislative intent to authorize invasive procedures such as the insertion of needles.

All health care providers without acupuncture formally included in their state practice act should be prohibited from the practice of acupuncture, even when described as “dry needling,” unless their practice act is legally expanded to include the practice of acupuncture and provide the same level of clinical and classroom training required for the licensure of acupuncturists. 

Thursday
Jul212016

Mark Reese, L.Ac. Rated Among Top Acupuncturists in Chicago

WWW.Expertise.com rated Mark Reese as one of the top twenty acupuncturists in Chicago, based upon expertise and patient satisfaction. Read about it here: https://www.expertise.com/il/chicago/acupuncture.

 

Wednesday
Mar092016

TMJ Facial Pain Responds Well to Acupuncture

Temperomandibular Joint Disorder (TMJ) is a condition that we treat a lot in clinic, almost always with remarkable results.

A recent US study, published in the journal, Pain and which can be read about here, corroborated the fact that acupuncture treated Temperomandibular Joint Disorder (TMJ) quite well:

The short-term phase of a comparative effectiveness study suggests that a combination of acupuncture and Chinese herbs is a safe and effective treatment for chronic facial pain caused by temporomandibular disorders (TMD). The US-based study allocated 168 participants with TMD to a stepped-care protocol. All patients first received TMD self care education (SC). At weeks two and 10, patients receiving SC whose worst facial pain was above predetermined levels were reallocated to either SC or TCM administered by experienced practitioners. The TCM protocol was designed to optimise individualised care within the confines of a research study, and included acupuncture, moxibustion, Chinese herbs, tuina and lifestyle/nutrition counselling. Participants were allocated a total of 20 acupuncture visits and 20 weeks of herbs within a one-year period, with six to ten sessions during the initial eight-week treatment period.
Acupuncturists have been successfully treating TMJ and other facial pain disorders for thousands of years and at our clinic this is common condition which we treat.
Wednesday
Mar022016

Bedwetting Effectively Treated with Acupuncture

Wednesday
Mar022016

Acupuncture found as Effective as Drug for Overactive Bladder (but without side effects)

My clinic treats many cases of overactive bladder and intractable interstitial cystitis, with often stunning success. Over the years, many studies have been done which have found that acupuncture and Chinese medicine are as, or more effective as the leading pharmaceuticals in treating an overactive bladder. Some of those I have excerpted below.

An article about the study, which can be read here, found that there was almost perfect (90%) resolution of bladder symptoms. These symptoms include frequent urination, nocturia, a sensation of incomplete emptying, incontinence, loss of urine and urge incontinence.

This is very good news for those suffering from bladder issues who have previously thought that there only option was drug therapy. The pharmaceuticals used to treat these symptoms have many side effects, including dry mouth, dry eyes, constipation, stomach pain, burning urination, extreme thirst, nausea, vomiting, painful urination, difficulty breathing, blurry vision and extreme exhaustion. Happily, acupuncture does not have side effects and so may be preferable for those who wish to avoid potential side effects as well as those for whom the drug is contraindicated: people with pernicious glaucoma, myasthenia gravis, severe liver disease and for those undergoing kidney dialysis.

Other studies have found much the same effect, an example being one which specifically looked at refractory interstitial cystis and found that,

...acupuncture needling combined with moxibustion improves the condition of patients with refractory interstitial cystitis, a urination bladder disorder. Interstitial cystitis involves chronic bladder region pain that is often accompanied by urinary urgency, frequency and the need to wake at night to urination. Moxa needles were applied to acupuncture points over the sacrum and patients experienced significant improvement in the condition.

 A Japanese study found that there was a dramatic difference between patients with interstitial cystitis receiving western care versus acupuncture treatment, concluding:

This therapy is traditional and relatively noninvasive. Although its precise mechanism of action is unclear, this study suggests that acupuncture and moxibustion treatment may be a complementary and alternative therapeutic option for refractory IC.

Another study, published in the British Journal of Urology, found that:

79% of patients in the study showed clinically significant improvements. The researchers conclude that acupuncture is an effective treatment modality for patients with overactive bladder syndrome (OAB) and “is well tolerated with no side effects or complications.” As a result, the research team notes that acupuncture “should be considered as a potential alternative to our current therapeutic regimes” for patients with OAB.