Acupuncture Ecology

Treating Fibromyalgia with Chinese Medicine

Fibromyalgia syndrome is a complex and strange condition. Not well understood by modern medicine, it encompasses a bewildering constellation of symptoms, including:

  • pain and tenderness all over the body
  • fatigue
  • sleep disturbances
  • stress, anxiety and depression
  • problems throughout the gastrointestinal tract, including
    • difficulty swallowing
    • dryness in mouth and throat
    • indigestion, Irritable Bowel Syndrome
    • incontinence
  • Sense problems, such as hypersensitivity to lights, sounds, and odors
  • Circulation problems, including numbness and tingling

In the US, fibromyalgia occurs in about 2 percent of the population and is more prevalent among women. The risk of fibromyalgia increases with age.

What causes it? That’s still an unknown. Among the contributors to fibromyalgia are:

  • Genetics
  • Infections
  • Physical or emotional stress or trauma

Conventional treatments are often limited to pharmaceutical drugs, counseling, and physical therapy.


The Chinese Medicine Approach

Acupuncture on back

Chinese medicine can be an excellent approach for treatment of fibromyalgia, due to its appreciation of subtleties and complexities.

In Chinese medicine, we recognize that, in fact, one symptom has many causes. The process of diagnosis is intentionally detailed in order to examine all of the possible factors in illness.

Further, “fibromyalgia” is not recognized as a single disease in Chinese medicine. Since many different people can present with very different manifestations of the disease, and have different health histories, each person is therefore treated very uniquely, according to what is actually found on interview and examination.

Additionally, Chinese medicine includes a wide body of treatment methods to apply, including acupuncture, herbal medicine, bodywork, and qigong exercises.

Acupuncture has been clinically tested by the Mayo Clinic to be helpful in treating fibromyalgia.

“The results of the study convince me there is something more than the placebo effect to acupuncture,” says David Martin, M.D., Ph.D., lead author of the acupuncture article and a Mayo Clinic anesthesiologist. “It affirms a lot of clinical impressions that this complementary medical technique is helpful for patients.”

Chinese medicine also provides the perspective to help you treat yourself. Chinese medicine can provide you with tips about your diet, lifestyle, and emotional life, all of which contribute to your illness. (Read the article 11 Tips for Preventing Fibromyalgia.)

But the strength of Chinese medicine is in its understanding of your individual needs and problems. The depth of diagnosis provided at Acupuncture Ecology, particularly with Contemporary Chinese Pulse Diagnosis, enable us not only to define with great sensitivity the many nuances of your physiological issues, it also makes that information available to you.

Like a sophisticated, natural form of biofeedback, you can get valuable knowledge about your own inner workings to apply to yourself, to take back control of your health.


To take the first step back to thriving, not just surviving, call or e-mail for a free consultation.