Although acupuncture was introduced to Europe as long ago as the early seventeenth century, scepticism about its effectiveness continues to exist in countries where modern Western medicine is the foundation of health care, especially in those where acupuncture has not yet been widely practised.
W.H.O. recognises that over its 2500 years of development, a wealth of experience has accumulated in the practice of acupuncture.
In countries where acupuncture forms part of the cultural heritage, its use in an integrated approach to modern and traditional medicine presents no difficulty.
However, in countries, such as Britain, where modern Western medicine is the foundation of health care, the expectation is that the use of acupuncture requires objective evidence of its efficacy under controlled clinical conditions.
This is to protect the general public from unrealistic and unfounded claims for the efficacy of acupuncture and to promote the appropriate use of this therapy. It is important that prospective clients are aware of this, and wherever possible this website has provided reference to peer reviewed, evidence based research and studies.
In 2002 the World Health Organisation published the following paper titled:
ACUPUNCTURE: REVIEW AND ANALYSIS OF REPORTS ON CONTROLLED CLINICAL TRIALS
The objective of this publication was to provide a thorough review and analysis of controlled clinical trials of acupuncture therapy, as reported in the [then] current literature,
" with a view to strengthening and promoting the
appropriate use of acupuncture in health care systems
throughout the world".
It is very important to note that although acupuncture may help you to feel better, it can not cure a serious underlying problem. It is, therefore, essential that you continue to seek normal medical advice and continue with essential medical treatment. A good acupuncturist will support you in this and refer you to a western medicine practitioner if appropriate.
World Health Organisation's Review on Acupuncture
What can acupuncture treat?
Traditional acupuncture's greatest strength is that it treats each patient individually. It focuses on a variety of factors that may contribute to a disease or 'imbalance', not just presenting symptoms, and has historically been used to relieve a very wide range of health problems.
lndividual practitioners will often have their own areas of special interest and expertise and it is, therefore, important to discuss your problems with them before commencing treatment.
Ann enjoys a busy general practice and has a special interest in acupuncture in Pregnancy for which she has undertaken extensive postgraduate training.