What is the history of acupuncture in the United States?
Decoding an Ancient Therapy

As a patient of Dr. Yong Luo for the past few years, I have been greatly impressed by his thoughtful and attentive care. He has had years of good training in his native China, and a rich clinical practice both in that country and the United States.

Dr. Yong Luo is a highly trained and experienced practitioner of acupuncture. As my care-giver in this field, I have been richly rewarded by his sensitivity and effective practice of his art.

I look for a medical care-giver who is well trained, experienced and compassionate. Dr. Yong Luo has these qualities. That is why he is my acupuncturist.

Jack Etheridge - Senior Judge Atlanta, Georgia

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Internal Diseases

 

When I came to Dr. Luo several years ago, I was extremely ill. I had been sick for months with severe digestive issues (I had been diagnosed with crohn's disease about 10 years earlier and was suffering from a terrible relapse).  At the time of my first appointment, I was about 20 lbs underweight and very weak.  I could hardly eat and was extremely anemic (I needed to have iron infusions previously, but they did not help me very much).  Most of my hair had fallen out and my skin was turning yellow. I was also in nearly constant pain. That first day Dr. Luo told me that within 3 months he would have me feeling much better. I started seeing him twice a week and drank the tea we made out of the dried Chinese herbs he gave us three times a day.  And Dr. Luo was right!  Within 3 months I was feeling much better. I could eat again and enjoy food for the first time in months, I started gaining healthy weight, and my hair began growing back. I still had a ways to go, but the change was amazing. I continued seeing Dr. Luo twice a week for 6 months and then once a week for 6 more months after that. During that time, my health continued to improve steadily, and now I see Dr. Luo every two weeks just for maintenance and because I believe acupuncture is so powerful in terms of supporting overall health and vitality.  Dr.  Luo gave me my life back when no one else (traditional or other alternative practitioners) could help me. I will always be grateful to him and thank God for leading us to him.  Now if I ever have a bad cold or a pulled muscle or any other health issue, I go to Dr. Luo rather than seeing any other doctor :)  I think every one of his patients can attest to his incredible skill as a doctor, but it is also important to note that Dr. Luo is one of the kindest people I have ever met.  He has such a pure heart and truly cares about each of his patients. He is just a wonderful person, and I really can't say enough wonderful things about him.

Andrea Gormley

 

Traditional Chinese Medicine's Treatment of Internal Diseases

Although modern medicine has made great achievements in the treatment of internal diseases, there are still many diseases that plague people often. Most common of them include stomach ache, asthma, insomnia, fatigue, constipation, and diarrhea. For some patients, two scenarios commonly occur: either they cannot take the amount of medication required due to serious drug side effects, or they are not able to alleviate their symptoms even after taking a heavy dosage. Under these circumstances, alternative treatment may be a good choice for these patients.

Traditional Chinese Medicine, with its two thousand years of history and embodying the ancient science and wisdom, is a reliable alternative treatment. In order to facilitate the understanding of Traditional Chinese Medicine's treatment of internal diseases, this article briefly describes its characteristics:

1.  Treatment

In treatment, Traditional Chinese Medicine combines external therapy and oral administration. External therapy mainly consists of acupuncture treatment; oral administration is the ingestion of Chinese herbs.

•  Acupuncture

Acupuncture is based on Traditional Chinese Medicine's meridian theory. It achieves its therapeutic purposes through stimulating the body surface by inserting needles in acupoints to adjust the function of body organs and tissue . Acupuncture is a non-drug therapy; there is no residue of drug metabolism or harm to the body.

•  Chinese Herbs

Due to the special importance of prescription of Chinese herbs, it garners a special introduction. As early as 3000 years ago China has used herbs to treat internal diseases. Initially, only a single herb was used per treatment. After many years of experiments and medical practice, systems of prescription were developed. The systems of prescription are governed by principles of Traditional Chinese Medicine theory and composition. A typical prescription consists of several to dozens of Chinese herbs. Traditional Chinese Medicine believes that with any internal disease, all systems inside the body are affected in different degrees. Through the form of prescription, Chinese herbs produce a variety of efficacies to play a role in a comprehensive regulation of the body. The coordination between the herbs in a prescription produces mutually reinforcing or attenuating effects that a single herb cannot achieve. Additionally, the use of a single herb has limited functions and is prone to side effects.

2.  Inheritance of Literary Resources

Modern clinical practice of Traditional Chinese Medicine uses many prescriptions and most of them have been popular since ancient times. On the other hand, Western Medicine's medical theory and clinical medicine often changes after several years or at most several decades. Past medical literatures have little value in current clinical applications . The theory of Traditional Chinese Medicine remain essentially unchanged, medical experience accumulated from the ancient times can still be used directly for current clinical practices. Expecially in treating internal diseases, ancient Chinese medical literature contains a wealth of ideas and useful clinical experience which still holds value today. Although the world has undergone great changes, there are only a few changes in the category of diseases. In other words, most of the diseases that exist today existed in ancient times. The only changes are their ranking. Modern Western Medicine, from theory to clinical practice, is mostly standardized, programmatic, and rarely need a doctor's personalized involvement. Traditional Chinese Medicine, on the contrary, is a truly personalized treatment. It must be done according to the climate, the environment, and the individual. This requires a physician's flexible thinking, high perception, and in particular, long-term experience in order to achieve the best effect. Therefore, medical experience inherited from ancient times are particularly valuable.

3.  Medical Model

Traditional Chinese Medicine generally has a systematic approach to its view on man and nature relationship and its understanding of human diseases. Ancient Chinese medical scientists, in exploring the relationship between life and disease, created a “ holistic–balance” research method recognizing that the human body is a result of organization and coordination of the various organs. Traditional Chinese Medicine uses a unique method of inspection, auscultation and olfaction, interrogation, and feeling pulse and palpation to collect the patient's information. It then forms a symptom complex and uses a combination of Chinese herbs, acupuncture, and other methods for treatment. Throughout the process of diagnosis and treatment , Traditional Chinese Medicine also pays special attention patients' environmental factors, psychological factors, and individual differences. This process makes for a more adaptive and targeted form of treatment. For example, in western medicine, if a patient suffers from stomach ache and an endoscopy shows " superficial gastritis ", this would be the only basis which the doctor can develop his or her treatment. However, in Traditional Chinese Medicine, the same stomach ache could be categorized as frigid pain, swelling pain, slight pain, and throbbing pain. According to Traditional Chinese Medicine diagnosis, these pains represent symptoms of “Spleen and Stomach Cold due to Deficiency ”, “Stagnation of the Qi in Spleen and Stomach ”, “Spleen and Stomach weakness ”, and “Stagnation of the Blood in Spleen and Stomach” respectively, and treatment methods of “Warming of Spleen and Stomach”, “Regulation of the Qi and Mitigating the Stomach ”, “ Strengthening of Spleen and Stomach ”, and “Activating the Blood” are used respectively.

Over the years, the World Health Organization has suggested that modern medicine, which uses the Biomedical Model, should be replaced with the Biopsychosocial Model because today, psychosomatic diseases are a serious threat to human health. Diseases caused by lifestyle, environmental and social factors account for 70% of the world's total diseases. Traditional Chinese Medicine's treatment of diseases always considers how social, environmental, climate, psychological, and other factors relate to the disease. This form of treatment is undoubtedly closer to the Biopsychosocial Model.

In summary, treatment using a combination of acupuncture and Chinese herbs, for various reasons, are especially good for patients who either cannot take or do not desire medication. In addition, acupuncture and Chinese herbs have the lowest possible side effects compared to other forms of treatment. For Traditional Chinese Medicine, the physician can take full advantage of the successful ancient experiences in the course of treatment. During clinical practice, Traditional Chinese Medicine focuses on a holistic regulation. In particular, it focuses on the climate, the environment, and the individual. Traditional Chinese Medicine is good for many chronic and degenerative diseases, functional disorders, endocrine disorders, age-related diseases, and for diseases that have unknown diagnosis.

The following are some case examples of patients Dr. Luo has treated.

Example 1. An 80 year-old female came to the clinic with migraine headaches. Dr. Luo began her treatment in May 2007.

Chief Complaint: She has been suffering from migraine headaches for over 30 years . She had severe pain on the left side of her head that affected her left eye . Her symptoms could last from 30 minutes to several days. Her doctor diagnosed the condition as " cerebral vascular migraine ." she had no significant effect after many years and multiple treatments. Recently, the frequency of her headaches increased to 2-3 episodes a day. She has trouble sleeping at night during severe episodes.

Examination: Left superficial temporal vein (Vv.temporales superficiales) engorgement. Tenderness in the left head acupoints GB8, EX-HN5, and ST8. “Taut Pulse”, “ Reddish Tongue”, and “ Yellowish Greasy Tongue”.

Diagnosis: Migraine headaches, “The Excessive Rise of Liver-Yang” according to Traditional Chinese Medicine.

Treatment: Dr. Luo prescribed acupuncture treatment twice a week in appropriate acupoints on the neck, front temporal area, and the two upper extremities. Her headaches gradually eased after two treatments. After eight weeks, her acupuncture treatment was reduced to once a week, and after three months, she no longer has migraine episodes. For the next four year, the patient reported occasional episodes (2-3 times a year) of migraine with significantly reduced pain. She experienced complete pain relief after 5-6 acupuncture treatments following each occasional episode.

Example 2. A 40 year-old male came to the clinic with diarrhea. Dr. Luo began his treatment in July 2009.

Chief Complaint: Patient suffered from abdominal pain and diarrhea. His symptoms began two years prior, allegedly due to excessive ingestion of cold drinks and unsanitary foods. Since that time, the patient suffered from frequent diarrhea (3-5 times per day), which led to a weight loss in excess of 20 pounds. The frequency of diarrhea increased to up to a dozen per day with ingestion of greasy foods. Often the patient experienced often abdominal discomfort due to abdominal pain and flatulence. Doctor has diagnosed his condition as " allergic colitis ”. However, the patient has yet to see significant change after repeated treatments. Three months prior to seeing Dr. Luo, he experienced almost daily occurrence of diarrhea, fatigue, and poor sleep.

Examination: Underweight, pale, and fatigue. “Thready Pulse” and “Pale Tongue”.

Diagnosis: Chronic diarrhea, “Deficiency of the Yang in spleen and kidneys” according to Traditional Chinese Medicine.

Treatment: Dr. Luo prescribed acupuncture treatment in appropriate acupoints on the abdomen and lower extremities twice a week for two weeks followed by once a week treatments. Additionally, the patient took Chinese herbs twice daily for ten days to mildly invigorate the spleen and the kidneys. After one month of treatment, his abdominal pain has completely dissipated and the diarrhea decreased significantly. Diarrhea was completely cured after two and half months of treatment (including a two week interruption). The patient refrained from eating unsanitary and greasy foods. There were no recurrences of diarrhea after a six months follow-up.

Example 3. A 46 year old female came to the clinic with asthma. Dr. Luo began her treatment in February 2010.

Chief Complaint: The patient suffered from asthma for six years . In the early stages, she experienced light symptoms of shortness of breath and discomfort after a cold. Two years prior to treatment, her symptoms worsened particularly during the cold seasons. The onset of her asthma has prolonged to 1-7 days. Her sleep was seriously affected because she was unable to lie down during night asthma attacks.

Examination: Breathlessness, phlegm in the throat, pale facial expressions, rapid pulse, and dark red tongue.

Diagnosis: Asthma, “Impaired Circulation of the Pulmonary Qi” and “The Phlegm Obstruction of the Lungs” according to Traditional Chinese Medicine.

Treatment: Dr. Luo prescribed acupuncture treatment in appropriate acupoints on the neck, back, and upper extremities three times in the first week of treatment, twice in the second week, and once a week from the third week on. Chinese herbal tea was ingested to “Clear the Lungs and Eliminate the Phlegm.” Two months after treatment, the patient's symptoms gradually dissipated and she stopped treatment. The asthma symptoms recurred after three months, but dissipated after two months of the original acupuncture treatment and ingestion of Chinese herbal tablets to “Clear the Lungs and Eliminate the Phlegm.” The patient was advised to adhere to proper exercises to enhance her immunity.

For more information of conditions that have been effectively treated by Acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine, please visit the CONDITIONS page. To learn what treatment Dr. Luo recommends for your specific condition, please email us georgia.acupuncture@gmail.com or call Dr. Luo's Atlanta Acupuncture Clinic (404)255-2558 or Canton Acupuncture Clinic (770)720-1398.

 

 

Atlanta Location: 4651 Roswell Rd Suite I-801 Atlanta, Georgia 30342 Tel:(404)255-2558 Fax:(404)255-2557
Canton Location:
200 Oakside Lane Suite D Canton, Georgia 30114 Tel : (770)720-1398 Fax: (404)255-2557
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