TCM and teaching acupuncture

| February 8, 2010 | 0 Comments | 260 views

Techniques and philosophies in acupuncture have been evolving for over 3,000 years in a wide range of countries and these diverse traditions have been reflected in the training provided in national colleges. Many schools of Traditional Chinese Medicine in the West teach acupuncture based on the 'twelve pulses 'and the' law of five elements '. Some current Chinese teaching can be based on much simpler forms of TCM and in many instances just local acupuncture points are used to treat pain and no attempt is made to evaluate or treat the underlying imbalances of' vital energy '. Western science seeks to explain the possible effects of acupuncture in terms of effects on humoral mediation via the circulation of neuro-transmitters and other hormones in the cerebrospinal fluid and blood stream (Hopwood, 1993), whilst also recognising the value of the 'holistic approach'.

Acupuncture treatment is now very popular in the USA and it is estimated that 9-12 million patients visit acupuncturists each year for treatments that involve up to 120 million needles (Lao, 1996). American doctors, osteopaths and chiropractors may use acupuncture without any or only limited extra training, according to individual State law. Other practitioners require specific training and for about the past 20 years State law has required acupuncturists to be licensed according to criteria developed by an Acupuncture Examining Committee and subsequently the National Commission for the Certification of Acupuncturists (NCCA). The examinations consisted of both written and practical tests. At the present time, anyone within the UK can use the title 'acupuncturist' and, in common with many other CAM therapies, acupuncture is not regulated by statute and there are a number of different organisations, colleges and so forth offering training, education or registration in the subject. The major acupuncture bodies listed by the University of Exeter (Mills and Peacock, 1997; Mills and Budd, 2000) are:

• The British Acupuncture Council
• The British Medical Acupuncture Society
• British Academy of Western Acupuncture
• The Acupuncture Association of Chartered Physiotherapists
• The Fook Sang Acupuncture and Chinese Herbal Practitioners Association
• The European Federation of Modern Acupu

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Category: Acupuncture Courses, Acupuncture Treatment

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