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We treat many conditions involving pain, from digestive issues like IBS or gall bladder problems to facial myalgia.  Acupuncture is also very helpful for relieving pain and swelling in joints.  These include neck, shoulder, elbow, hip, knee and back.  Some patient cases are details below.

Acupuncture Digestive
Patient: Digestive Jan 2011 Male Caucasian (72)
Weight: 13st 7lbs Height: 5’ 8’
Occupation: Retired 15 years, previously self-employed contractor
Hobbies: Gardening, newspapers, walking
Presenting Problem (PP): Pain under right hypochondrium, on the lateral aspect of the abdomen.
History of PP:Experienced on/off for 18 years, following a quadruple cardiac bypass. Feels like 2 sharp pins piercing very strongly in region for approx. 30 seconds. 5 day episode of this has just occurred, pain present now. Often aware of flatulence around times of this pain, can be offensive. More aware of on rising and tends to go before lunch time, but can be erratic.
Alcohol:2-5 units / week Smoking: nil Recreational: nil
Medical History of PP: No treatment for PP as yet.
Medical History:Aspirin 1 x daly, Perindopril embrumine 1 x daily (ACE inhibitor for BP). CT scan one month earlier – all clear in lung regions.
Other therapies: Bimonthly reflexology.
Energy: 8/10 Well: 7/10 Sleep: 7/10
Tiredness and lack of energy: Can be exhausted after looking after great grandson for extended periods of time, otherwise energy is excellent. Always active.Temperature: Generally feels warm.

Sleep: Generally excellent, except when there is a cough or great grandson wakes.

Digestion: Good breakfast, but very light lunch – poor appetite through day, light evening meal. Occasional bouts of heartburn and indigestion. On inspection, the abdomen is heavily bloated. Experienced flatulence, see PP.

Bowels: Regular. Soon after rising

Fluids: Drinks plenty of water, frequent thirst.

Frequency, can go 6 x before midday. Has suffered bouts of increased frequency to this. No pain, but slight dribbling.

Sweat: Only on exertion.

Head: Feel a sharp pain around from mid neck to vertex, last 5 seconds, 2 x in last month, shooting and severe.

Heart: Nothing abnormal detected (NAD)

Respiratory: Frequent bouts of chronic productive or non-productive cough (usually non-productive). Sticky yellow mucus and hard to expectorate, worse on lying down, episode for 2 weeks, 3 weeks ago, has 2-4 year for last 3 years.

Musculo-skeletal: Gout approx. 3 x year, left foot 1st MTP joint or ankle. Can last between 5 days and 3 weeks.

Genito: Penis has retracted in last 6 months, has difficulty urinating for this reason. Libido and erectile function unchanged.

Eyes: Left can be blurred, cataracts operated on 2 years ago.

Ears: NAD

Happy: 8/10 Stressed: 7/10 Worried: 7/10 Anger: 3/10
Depressed: 1/10 Sad: 1/10 Anxious: 7/10 Fearful: 3/10
Tongue: Red dots on lung region, red, yellow coating throughout and thick coating at root
8 principles: Internal, excess, hot, yang
Five substances: Qi, Blood
External Pathology Factors: Wind, Heat
Diagnosis: Liver Qi stagnation
Analysis: The presence of wind in the abdomen, as a result of Liver Qi stagnation, can account for the short bursts of severe pain. There is likely an underlying Yin def. which also affects the lungs as the symptoms alternate between phlegm heat in the lungs and Lung Yin def. The kidney energies have also weakened in a presentation similar to Kidney Yang def.
1st Treatment – bilateral
4 gates – Relieve anxiety and specific for Liver Qi stagnation.
2nd Treatment – 2 weeks later, bilateral, unless stated:
Same as above
Additional: GB 34 Right only – to reduce spasm on right side, relax sinews.Tongue: Little red, horizontal cracks, yellow coating mainly at root.

Pulse: Deep and weak

Progress and changes: Pain in right side has been absent from the treatment, but returned 2 days ago. Recently been stressed due to babysitting.

Note: Pulse is dramatically different to previous treatment.

Reaction: additional level of improvement in pain, but still present only on flexion
3rd Treatment – 2 weeks later, bilateral, unless stated:
4 gates – Relieve anxiety and specific for Liver Qi stagnation.
Sp 3 – Right side – MTP joint has tenderness and aching.Tongue: Slightly red, thin yellow coat.Pulse: Strong and wideProgress and changes: Pain alleviated following treatment and not returned.
4th Treatment – 2 weeks later, bilateral:
4 gates – Relieve anxiety and specific for Liver Qi stagnation.
St 36 – Boost Qi and Blood
Lu 5 – Strengthen Lungs and connection with kidneysNote: Has an episode of coughing – dry, infrequent, difficult to remove mucus, sticky yellow, worse at night.Tongue: Slightly red, thick yellow coating, thicker at root.Pulse: Strong and deepProgress and changes: Fell over and injured the right side where the pain normally stems, similar pain has emerged again, yet more superficial, but has lessened in severity each day following. No visible markings or bruising present over region.
5th Treatment – 2 weeks later, bilateral:
4 gates – Relieve anxiety and specific for Liver Qi stagnation.
Sp 10 – Invigorate and cool blood , dispel dampness (heat and abdominal bloating)
Yaotongxue – extra points (Lumbar pain), without reducing.Tongue: Slightly red, light yellow / white coating at rootPulse: Strong and wideProgress and changes: Pain on right side absent. Woke this morning with stiffness in the lower back – resolved having had the additional lumbar acupuncture point. Needles were inserted, with strong Deqi attained, therefore no reducing was undertaken.Evaluation: The acupuncture impacted the pain. It would appear that certain stresses and the fall had additionally injured the region and likely played a role in its return. The pain had not returned, following a progress report four weeks later.
Acupuncture elbow
Patient: Elbow Jan 2011 Caucasian male (40)
Weight: 11st 3lbs Height: 5’ 7’
Presenting Problem: Right forearm muscular induced pain, on flexion between approx.140-170 degree flexion and extension. Approx. 2 cun from anterior elbow crease to 7 cun distally in this line.
History of Presenting Problem: 4 weeks ago following moving cement blocks. Pain constant on certain movements involving this degree of flexion / extension. Area becomes warm if pain is induced for a while. Absent on resting or other forms of movement. Not experienced before.
Pulse: Rapid, regular, full
Tongue: redness on stomach/spleen, pale on liver/gall bladder, slight swelling
8 principles: Internal, deficiency, hot, Yin
Five substances: Qi
Diagnosis: Local Qi stagnation (and likely stomach Yin def.)
1st Treatment – right side
Li 11 – local pain and qi movement
Li 10 – local pain and qi movement, strengthen arm
Lu 7 – clear stagnation through lung meridian
Notes: one minute of stimulating Lu 7 deqi
Reaction: Patient feels sensation of focal point, awareness of pulsating feeling, at Ren 10. Minor improvement in pain relief whilst performing painful movement immediately following.
2nd Treatment – 1 week later, right side
Same as above
Also including Si 7 & Si 8
Reaction: additional level of improvement in pain, but still present only on flexion
3rd Treatment – 1 week later, right side
As above
Additional: specific local exercises recommended
Progress: All pain and stiffness subsided three – four days following, no further treatment required.
Acupucture hip
Patient: Hip Jun 2011 Male Caucasian (73)
Weight: 13st Height: 5’ 7″
Presenting Problem (PP): Hip Pain
History of PP:Fell during work and damaged right hip, 10 days ago, region slightly red inferior to anterior superior iliac spine. Hip feels stiff and immobile compared to left. Walking has been affected, but pain is localised to hip region only.
Alcohol: nil at present Smoking: nil Recreational: nil
Medical History of PP: No treatments
Medical History:Tonsillectomy at age 27. Farmers lung severe in 20’s and 30’s, (excessive mucus fevers, shortness of breath), scarring is left in both lungs (can be seen in the iris). Pneumonia and bronchitis at 7.
Treatments / Medications: Amitrypythline 2.5mg 1/N since 1985 (anti-depressant, for sleep)
Energy: 8/10 Well: 8/10 Sleep: 4/10
Tongue: Heavily cracked over Spleen / Stomach, light yellow coating, slightly red
Pulse: Strong, distinct
8 principles: External, Excess, Hot, Yin
Five substances: Qi, Blood
Diagnosis: Local Qi and Blood stagnation.
1st Treatment – Right side:
Gb 29, Gb 30, Gb 31 – local for Qi and Blood movement
Reactions: Felt more mobile immediately coming off couch.
2nd Treatment – 1 week later:
Same as first, also including
GB 34 (influential point for the sinews).
Tongue: Cracked over Spleen / Stomach, thin light yellow coating throughout, slightly red.
Pulse: strong, wide.
Progress and changes: Mobility increased between sessions, better by approx 70% and free of pain.
Progress report 3 weeks later: No problems, hip is fine
Acupuncture knee
Patient: Knee Jan 2011 Male Caucasian (76)
Weight: 14st Height: 5’ 4″
Presenting Problem (PP): Right knee stiff and painful
History of PP: All joints feel stiff, better for movement, but worse after a long day. Very active mentally and physically. Right knee has felt stiff for last 3 months and afraid it will give way.
Alcohol: 5 units/ week Smoking: nil Recreational: nil
Medical History of PP: No treatments
Medical History: Regular urinary tract infections, for last 20 years, has received various antibiotics and anti-inflammatory drugs. Has had mainly herbal medicine for last 10 years.
Other therapies: Weekly reflexology
Energy: 8/10 Well: 7/10 Sleep: 7/10
Tongue: Swollen, pale, thin white coat, dry.
Pulse: Strong and distinct, spends up and down; regularly irregular
8 principles: Internal, Excess, Cold, Yin
Five substances: Qi, Blood, Body Fluids
External Pathology Factors: Cold, Damp
Diagnosis: Local Qi and Blood excess. Likely a deficiency in Body Fluids and overall Yang def. There is a chronic damp condition, which has moved to phlegm which can affect the heart and lungs. The Kidneys are weak due to the recurrent urinary problems, nocturia and knee problem, presenting as a heat condition when flaring up (burning urine).
1st Treatment – Right side only:
St 35 and M-LE-16 – both knee eyesAlso M-LE 2 as this is where the stiffness originates from.
2nd Treatment – 2 weeks later – Right side only:
A above
Also GB 34 as the tendons felt tight and restricted on the lateral side.
Swollen, slight purple / paleness body colour
Pulse: Strong, deep kidney pulse.
Progress and changes: Knee much better, continued to get better for about 5 days following the last treatment and feels marginal stiffness now
Acupuncture back pain chronic
Patient: lower back, chronic Feb 2011 Caucasian female (22)
Weight: 11st Height: 5’ 6″
Presenting Problem (PP): Lower back pain, feels like she has been ‘kicked by a horse’. Travels up lumbar spine and from hips down the backs of the legs. Constantly for 8 months, on/ off for last 3 years. Severe at present. Postural related, also induced by waking or various activities. Worse in morning and standing for any duration.
History of PP: Almost split pelvis during last pregnancy (reported by doctor during second tri-semester) one year ago. Wore a belt for 6 months.
Alcohol: binges 2 / month Smoking: 10 / day Recreational: nil
Medical History of PP:
Medical History: Co-codamol, glucosamine, white willow bark, devils claw, multiple vitamins. Currently on antibiotics 4 days ago (chest infection). Antibiotics taken 6 weeks ago (repetitive chest and ear infections).
Treatments / Medications:
Energy: 2/10 Well: 3/10 Sleep: 1/10
Tongue:Moderately swollen, thin white coat.
Pulse: Weak and deep
8 principles: Internal, excess, heat, Yin
Five substances: Qi, Blood
Diagnosis: Local Qi and Blood Stagnation.
1st Treatment – bilateral:
B25 & B26 for local pain
B60 distal point for pain along bladder meridian
Immediate reactions: Still feels like needles are in (particularly B26 right). Feels much more relaxed. Minor dull pain on right lumber, but no pain otherwise on the lower back.
2nd Treatment – 1 week later:
B23 – boost kidneys, move lumbar qi
B25 specific for lumbar pain
B40 distal for lumbar pain and clearing heat
Tongue: Slightly pale on body, but red at lungs, thin white coat
Pulse: Un-rooted otherwise normal.
Immediate reactions: Mobility and stiffness better.
Feedback between treatments: pain in lower back subsided completely for three days, but hips and thighs still hurt. More of a focal pain developed since then along the medial spinal bladder meridian in the lumbar region. Slept very well that night, up and down since but better overall.
3rd Treatment – 1 week later:
Same as above
Additional: GB34 & K3
Tongue: red spots on lungs and gall bladder. Thin white / translucent coat
Pulse: Weak and deep, poorly rooted
Immediate reactions and feedback: Able to get comfortable quicker. Reduced pain killer intake. Bowels more regular (finished antibiotics and reduced pain killers). Experiencing burning and aching pain in arches and heels, but back and hips continue to improve.
Feedback one week later: Pain in hips and legs developed on the fifth day following, but woke with period pains which subsided quickly and lower back and hip quickly subsided.
Progress report one month later: Stopped all medications, except occasional pain killer (far less frequent), generally feels happier in herself.
Acupunture back acute
Patient: lower back, lumbar Dec 2010 Male Caucasian (38)
Weight: 11st 6Ib Height: 5’ 9″
Occupation: I.T. consultant
Presenting Problem (PP): Woke 2 days ago with lower back pain, stiff and immobile.
History of PP:Has experienced a similar condition approx. 3 times before, in the last 4 years. Bending or movement is difficult to impossible, severe pain, worse on movement. Stiffness remains constant. Had been working excessively prior to onset.
Alcohol: 20 units / week Smoking: nil Recreational: nil
Medical History of PP: Nothing taken or done as yet.
Medical History: Ear problems as a child; earache and discharge, resolved and not returned. Long term insomnia.
Treatments / Medications: Herbal and homeopathic treatment resolved ear problems as a child. No operations or serious illness to note.
Energy: 8/10 Well: 2/10 (currently) Sleep: 2-6/10
Tiredness and lack of energy: Feeling of exhaustion and lethargy erratic, mostly strong.
Tongue: Red and dry (greater degree of redness over lung region)
Pulse: Strong, regular
8 principles: Internal, excess, hot, Yang
Five substances: Qi, Blood
External Pathological Factors: Heat
Diagnosis:Local Qi and Blood Stagnation..There is likely a chronic Yin def. present and an excess pattern.
B 25 + B 26– local to release the Qi and blood stagnation
B 62 – bilateral as pain is felt spreading across, to move Qi within meridian, specific for back to relax tendons and heat.
Si 3 – Again used specifically for the lower back and to move the Qi, combination point with B62.
Immediately following treatment: Felt slightly eased coming off the couch.
Progress report 5 days later: No problems, hip is fine
Acupuncture neck
Patient: Neck Dec 2010 Male Caucasian (48)
Weight: 10st 7lb Height: 5’ 6″
Presenting Problem (PP): Tension on the right side of the neck.
History of PP: Pain in neck started three days ago, on rising. Regularly suffers from muscular tension around the shoulders, right side usually worse. Trapezius raised and taught, muscle tight, pain severe. Can establish into a headache lasting from hours to 2 days intense. Experienced 6 hour headache 3 weeks ago, relaxes to relief. 2 months ago, had a frozen shoulder, same side, resolved with acupuncture, but the pain moved to the vertex of the head and remained for 2 days.
Alcohol: 5 units/ week Smoking: nil Recreational: nil
Medical History of PP: Applies a herbal based lotion to the affected area to relief muscular tension.
Medical History: Several broken bones – including clavicle (twice – right side).
Treatments / Medications: First aid treatments as necessary for injuries. Various natural remedies for headaches.
Energy: 9/10 Well: 8/10 Sleep: 9/10
Tiredness and lack of energy: Generally excellent, works average 10 hours a day, every day. Can get exhausted by the evenings.
Head: Throbbing headache usually caused by tension in the shoulders or neck. Usually up the right side to the vertex. When having domestic disputes, muscles can tighten with headache to follow.
Tongue: Lung region red, body pale and wet, moderately swollen
Pulse: Strong, forceful
8 principles: Internal, Excess, Hot, Yang
Five substances: Qi, Shen, Blood
External Pathology Factors: Wind, Cold
Diagnosis: Local Qi and Blood excess condition.
B 62 – Right side, reducing technique with patient moving neck. A distal point specific for moving energy through the meridian pathway and relax tendons in region.
Progress: Tension and pain reduced immediately, very slight sensation left, which went by the end of the day.
Acupuncture shoulder
Patient: Shoulder Oct 2010 Caucasian male (22)
Weight: 10st 6 lbs Height: 5’ 10″
Presenting Problem (PP):Shoulder pain, right side. Crepitus. Sharp pain on raising arm, also induced by sitting upright for more than 20 mins (sitting slumped prevents onset). Goes into cervical region. Shoulder only feels numb on long exertion then spreads to neck. Also has sinus congestion, clear & copious for the last 3 days with difficulty sleeping due to breathing difficulties and thirst..
History of PP: 1 ½ years ago, during kitchen work. Had just left building site and having muscular aches before starting chef job. Kitchen work involves repetitive arm movements, many times above head. Gets worse with use. Two months into this occupation, right shoulder steadily got worse, left occasional twinge. Also worsened by stress.
Alcohol: nil Smoking: 5 / day Recreational: Cannabis
Medical History: Acupuncture and anti-inflammatory drugs for knee injury at 9 years old. Currently experiences pain on walking more than 1 mile feels right ‘knee is on fire’. Constant crepitus. Asthma as a child, last severe attack 5 years ago, now has 2 puffs usually before lying down. Diagnosed mild asthmatic.
Treatments / Medications: no treatment for current complaint.
Energy: 7/10 Well: 8/10 Sleep: 9/10
Energy:Tired due to parenting (night duties), otherwise NAD.
Tongue:Mild swelling throughout, flabby, thin white/gray coat, quivery, lung area red, cracking in spleen/stomach
Pulse: Slow, forceful
8 principles: Internal, deficient, hot, Yin
Five substances: Body fluids, Qi
External Pathological Factors: Damp
Diagnosis: Localised Qi Stagnation.
1st Treatment – bilateral:
St 38 with reducing technique, specific for shoulder pain
Li 15 alleviates local pain and stasis
Sj 14 to alleviates pain and stiffness
Sj 5 for pain and clearing heat
Reactions: shoulder felt heavy and relaxed for three to four hours following, a‘pleasant feeling’. Reduced pain as day progressed – did not develop during work. Shoulder producing a lot of heat, especially six hours following. Patient reports a good night sleep.
2nd Treatment – 3 days later:
Same as above
Immediate reactions:Shoulder stiff immediately following. No pain developed in shoulder at all, small amount in neck which normally accompanies. Sinus mucus reduced but present and copious immediately following treatment. Energy described as ‘rolling’ – very good and on the ball. Slept deeply.
Tongue: White, grayish coat, red lungs and quivering.
Pulse: Strong, slow, distinct (no superficial pulse)
3rd Treatment – 3 days later:
Same as first treatment
Thin white coating, very moist, mildly greasy, quivery, lungs red
Pulse: Strong, distinct and faster than previous
Progress report 2 days and one week later: No pain or stiffness noted.

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