This is a particularly recent case. A middle aged man with a bulging disk was referred to the clinic by family members. He had been suffering from significant pain in his lower back and down his left leg. It got severe enough that he finally decided to come in for acupuncture.
Prior to coming to the clinic the patient had tried physical therapy and over-the -counter pain killers such as ibuprofen. There had been no improvement, and he was having difficulty with sleep due to the pain.
Acupuncture treatment on the first visit was simple. Specific points were needled in the low back region, and along certain portions of the leg that had the pain. These points fell along two different ‘channels’ (also called meridians). Additionally, a special far infrared heat lamp was placed over the patient’s lower back. Upon completion of the treatment, the patient reported reduction of pain, and moderately improved range of motion in his left leg. A follow up visit was scheduled for about 5 days later.
SECOND VISIT-When the patient came in for his second visit, he reported that he was now able to sleep as the pain had continued to reduce. He also reported a better ability to walk ‘without hobbling’.
Currently, the patient is going for a consultation with a medical doctor outside the area to assess all his treatment options regarding his bulging disc. He is thankful for the pain relief from acupuncture, and plans to come back for further acupuncture treatment if surgery is not necessary.
In Chinese medicine, it is said that when there is pain there is no free flow, and when there is free flow, there is no pain. In this man’s case, acupuncture treatment aimed at promoting the flow of qi and blood through the channels where the pain was located, and thus through the entire regions. The special heat lamp also helped to promote this healthy circulation while also relaxing the muscles.