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Acupuncture for sciatica

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Is acupuncture for sciatica effective? I am a long-term cancer survivor who underwent a lot of radiation during my active therapies in ’94 and ’95. As a result, I have, among other side effects, radiation-induced lumbo-sacroal plexopathy (RILP).

In short, the muscles and nerved in my lower body don’t work too well. So when I fell on my butt a few weeks ago it was little surprise to me that my sacroiliac joint began causing sciatic nerve pain.

The question then becomes what, if anything, can be done for therapies to moderate and eventually stop the intense pain down the back of my thighs.

I began by researching acupuncture for sciatics. According to the research linked and excerpted below, acupuncture for sciatica is an effective therapy.

What is Acupuncture used for?

  • Pain Relief: Acupuncture is widely recognized for its ability to alleviate different types of pain, including back pain, neck pain, arthritis, and migraines.
  • Stress and Anxiety Management: It is often used to reduce stress and anxiety levels, promoting a sense of relaxation and well-being.
  • Digestive Issues: Acupuncture can help treat digestive disorders such as irritable bowel syndrome (IBS), constipation, and nausea.
  • Women’s Health: It is used to address menstrual cramps, irregular periods, menopausal symptoms, and infertility.
  • Allergies and Respiratory Conditions: Acupuncture can provide relief from allergies, asthma, and sinusitis.
  • Improving Sleep: It is used to treat insomnia and improve overall sleep quality.
  • Boosting Immunity: Acupuncture can strengthen the immune system and help prevent illness.
  • Addiction and Rehabilitation: It is sometimes used as part of treatment programs for addiction to substances like nicotine, alcohol, and drugs.
  • Overall Well-being: Some people use acupuncture as a preventive measure to maintain general health and well-being.

I am at the beginning of my research into acupuncture in general and specifically for acupuncture for sciatica. If you have experience, pro or con, regarding either acupuncture or sciatica, please email me at David.PeopleBeatingCancer@gmail.com

Thank you,

David Emerson

  • Cancer Survivor
  • Cancer Coach
  • Director PeopleBeatingCancer

Effectiveness of Acupuncture for Treating Sciatica: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis

“This is a systematic review and meta-analysis, which aimed to assess the current evidence on the effects and safety of acupuncture for treating sciatica. In this review, a total of 11 randomized controlled trials were included. As a result, we found that the use of acupuncture may be more effective than drugs and may enhance the effect of drugs for patients with sciatica, but because of the insufficient number of relevant and rigorous studies, the evidence is limited. Future trials using rigorous methodology, appropriate comparisons, and clinically relevant outcomes should be conducted….”

How acupuncture treatment for sciatica works for Pain Relief

Acupuncture for sciatica involves inserting tiny needles into specific points called acupuncture points on the body’s surface. This insertion triggers a particular reaction in the nervous system, which is transmitted to the brain. Due to this reaction, the brain releases natural painkillers such as endorphins and encephalin. There is also increased blood flow into the body part where the pain is experienced, bringing relaxation to the surrounding area.

Acupuncture for sciatica

Role of Acupuncture in the Natural Treatment of Sciatica Pain

Though it cannot correct or heal structural defects in the lower back that cause sciatica pain, acupuncture is an effective treatment for pain management. Patients who receive acupuncture for sciatica experience significant improvement in their condition and relief from their severe pain.

Acupuncture points for sciatica treatment

The acupuncture for sciatica procedure includes inserting needles into the wrist/forearm and lower calf/ankle areas, where the acupuncture points for pain management are located. These needles will increase blood flow and bring relaxation to the muscles of the affected area, the lumbar vertebrae, and the pathway of the pain in the leg.

Some of the primary acupuncture points for sciatica are:

  • Zhibia BL54,
  • Dachangshu BL25,
  • Weizhong BL40,
  • Chengfu BL36,
  • Fengshi GB31,
  • Chengsha BL57,
  • Ashi, Huantia GB30
  • Yaoyangguan DU3.

Xuehai (SP10) and Taichong (LV3) are additional acupuncture points for sciatica, where needles are inserted to treat Qi stagnation and blood stasis. Shenshu (BL23) and Taixi (KD3) are also added for liver and kidney deficiency. Yanglingquan (GB34) is added for cold and damp stasis.

Conclusion on natural treatment for sciatica pain

Sciatica is a painful condition that requires urgent medical attention. It can be bothersome and impact the sufferer’s daily life. Whether the experience is mild or chronic, seeking help from a qualified acupuncturist is essential. Lots of research has proven the effectiveness of acupuncture for sciatica. The best way out is to go for acupuncture treatment to improve your mobility and quality of life by managing your pain effectively.

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