Acupuncture has been effectively treating disease for 2000 years. Over one billion
people in Asia view the body and disease according to the ideas of Chinese medicine.
There was increased interest in acupuncture in this country in the 1970's when China and
the United States opened relations.
The Chinese explanation of acupuncture and how it works is not based on Western biomedical
science, but on a system of meridians, or pathways that form a network and link the tissues
and organs into an organic whole. Disease occurs when the flow of Qi in the meridians becomes
deficient, excessive, stagnant, or blocked. These conditions can be influenced and altered
by the insertion of acupuncture needles into points located along the meridians to regulate
and balance the flow of Qi in the body.
Extensive research in both the East and the West shows that acupuncture works both
locally and systemically. It has measurable effects on the autonomic nervous system and,
therefore, on vascular and endocrine physiology. It affects brain chemistry and
neurotransmitters, including endorphins, which play a role in pain relief.