acupuncture for low back pain

Acupuncture for Low Back Pain Beats Pain Killers – New Guidelines

Gentle, Safe & Effective – Acupuncture for Low Back Pain

February 2017, The American College of Physicians (ACP) published new guidelines providing clinical recommendations on acupuncture, tai chi, mindfulness-based stress reduction and other noninvasive treatments for low back pain.

The present epidemic regarding addiction to opioid-based pain medications has brought about a necessary need for alternative and natural solutions to chronic pain.

Per the new clinical guidelines, clinicians and patients are recommended to initially select non-drug treatments such as acupuncture, tai chi, mindfulness-based stress reduction for chronic low back pain. Recommendations are based on a systematic review of randomized, controlled trials and systematic reviews published through April 2015 for low back pain.

This article highlights the obvious services we offer here at the clinic – acupuncture, tai chi and mindfulness-based stress reduction therapies.

Other non-drug treatments recommendations included exercise, multidisciplinary rehabilitation, yoga, motor control exercise, progressive relaxation, electromyography biofeedback, low-level laser therapy, operant therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, or spinal manipulation.

I think it’s important to point out these recommendations contain a wide-range of natural and holistic modalities which shows a shift toward natural and alternative therapies and a recognition of their effectiveness.

Did you know that low back pain is one of the most common reasons to visit a doctor in the United States?

Back pain is very common. The low back is a complicated anatomical structure. The whole body anchors into the lower back like spokes connected to the hub of a wheel. The low back needs to be strong and flexible to withstand the weight and strain of the rest of the body. Check out these video’s on low back health – Weight Gain and Low Back Pain; Stress and Low Back Pain

Let’s define back pain based on duration:

  • Acute back pain lasts less than 4 weeks
  • Subacute back pain lasts 4 to 12 weeks
  • Chronic back pain lasts more than 12 weeks.

Many patients unfortunately come in for treatment after entering the chronic stage. Chronic pain is resulting from stagnation of circulation through the troubled area. Acupuncture can stimulate the body’s natural healing abilities to alleviate pain and restore function.

Seeking acupuncture therapy to promote circulation early on, when the trouble began, can lead to a shorter duration of suffering and prevention of long term disability and time out of work. So, plain and simple, treating early can prevent chronic issues.

Pain, disability, and return to work typically improve rapidly in the first month for patients who do seek medical care.

Chronic issues are also costly. Besides the indirect costs from missed work or decreased productivity, low back pain is associated with high costs related to health care. In 2006, the total costs related to low back pain in the USA were estimated at $100 billion, two thirds of which were indirect costs of lost wages and productivity.

Why suffer from chronic low back pain or concerns about pain medication when therapies like acupuncture for low back pain can provide a safe, gentle and effective solution.

Take control of Your Health Naturally – call the clinic if you have questions or would like to make an appointment – Contact Us.

Additional Reading:

More info on Acupuncture – Top 10 Reasons to Try Acupuncture

More info on Tai Chi and Chi Kung

More info on Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction and other Stress Reduction treatments.

More on our signature Less Stress Now program

Citation: Qaseem A, Wilt TJ, McLean RM, Forciea MA, for the Clinical Guidelines Committee of the American College of Physicians. Noninvasive Treatments for Acute, Subacute, and Chronic Low Back Pain: A Clinical Practice Guideline From the American College of Physicians. Ann Intern Med. [Epub ahead of print 14 February 2017] doi: 10.7326/M16-2367

Clinical Guidelines Link:


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