ACUPUNCTURE and DRY NEEDLING?

Acupuncture

Or Therapeutic Needling (as we like to term it) is a treatment modality using extremely thin acupuncture needles for the treatment of numerous body structures. It is termed "Dry Needling" because the needles do not deliver any fluid (or injectate) as would a hypodermic needle. It differs from Acupuncture in that we use it under our scope of practice treating the Neuro-Musculo-Skin-Circulatory-Skeletal systems. Acupuncturists may use it to treat any and all conditions. We use it based upon the knowledge gained from the large volume of research done worldwide. We also combine it with our techniques to normalize and restore the body’s structure and function.

WHAT STRUCTURES ARE TREATED?

Commonly treated structures include: taut bands in muscle, tendons, ligaments, musculo-tendinous junctions, osseo-ligamentous junctions, bone (“periosteal pecking”), and peri-neural needling for the purpose of improving microcirculation and disrupting fibrosis in chronic neurogenic pain syndromes. Other areas known to provide significant pain relief are also used.

WHAT CONDITIONS BENEFIT FROM THERAPEUTIC DRY NEEDLING?

Acupuncture

Pain! Chronic pain from all sources, Post operative pain, herpetic pain, diabetic pain, pain from muscle, bone, and joint problems.

Lower Body Conditions commonly treated include: Neuropathies, plantar fasciitis, Low back pain, Piriformis and IT Band syndromes, sciatica, hip dysfunctions, knee osteoarthritis, patellofemoral pain syndrome, medial collateral ligament injuries, “shin splints”, ankle “sprains”, and Achilles tendinosis.

Upper Body Conditions commonly treated include: Tennis Elbow, carpal tunnel syndrome, whiplash, headaches and migraines, rib syndromes, facet joint syndromes, neck pain and radiculopathies, shoulder impingement, and temporomandibular dysfunction.

WHAT IS THERAPEUTIC DRY NEEDLING USED FOR?

Physical Therapists use Dry Needling to provide pain relief and stimulate healing in the treatment of numerous musculoskeletal and neuromuscular conditions. Brain imaging studies have demonstrated that needling of specific points (not trigger points), stimulates the descending pain inhibitory systems or cortical areas of the brain that are involved in pain control. Therapists do not use it for the purpose of altering the flow of Qi or energy along traditional Chinese meridians, and we do not claim to be performing the practice of traditional Chinese acupuncture or Oriental Medicine.

Acupuncture

WHAT TRAINING DO THERAPISTS RECEIVE IN THERAPEUTIC DRY NEEDLING?

Physical Therapists begin with a comprehensive and rigorously detailed program of study in Anatomy, Physiology, Pathology, Neuroscience, Orthopedics, and Kinesiology. They then receive training in evidence-based guidelines for the use of dry needling within the framework of western musculoskeletal diagnoses. In addition, they are also trained in the most recent evidence underpinning the mechanical, hypoalgesic (central, segmental, peripheral), neurophysiologic, chemical, and hormonal effects of dry needling. They learn evidence-based guidelines for treatment, recommended “point” locations, and dosages for the use of dry needling. Much of the literature that “dry needling” draws from uses the term “acupuncture” in its title, and many of these studies have used both traditional acupuncture points and myofascial trigger points in their treatment regimes. Thus, a foundational knowledge of the nomenclature and the location of several key traditional acupuncture points is learned to help the clinician understand and interpret the existing biomedical acupuncture and dry needling literature within the context of neuromusculoskeletal conditions.