Glossary

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The art, science, and philosophy of treating disease and injury by stimulating specific energy modulating points on and beneath the skin. Methods of stimulation include, but are not limited to: needle insertion, electrical stimulation, light, heat and pressure (acupressure).  Acupuncture addresses a wide variety of health conditions which includes all systems and tissues of the body and focuses special attention to the relationship between the spine, nervous system and the meridian system.  Acupuncture is inclusive of all diagnostic and therapeutic principles and procedures that are consistent with Western, scientifically-validated methods.

According to the 2002 National Health Interview Survey, an estimated 8.2 million Americans have been to an acupuncturist, and an estimated 2.1 million U.S. adults used acupuncture in the previous year. Since the use of acupuncture has spread widely in the U.S. in the past 20 years, researchers are studying the benefits of acupuncture for many conditions, including low-back pain, headaches, and osteoarthritis of the knee.

Acupuncture may be useful as an independent treatment for some conditions, but it can also be used as a complement to other healthcare therapies.  [source: American Chiropractic Association]