The Federal Drug Administration (FDA) declared acupuncture as one of the nonpharmacologic therapies recommended for the treatment of pain. This information comes out of their document entitled, "FDA Education Blueprint for Health Care Providers Involved in the Management or Support of Patients with Pain," dated May 2017.
The paper lists acupuncture as one of the many numerous ways to treat pain, which is especially significant given the current opiod addiction epidemic in the US. In the section called Opioid Analgesics, attention is drawn to the fact that health care providers should know the depth of the epidemic, and realize the source of most of the opioid drugs being abused by the public originally come from doctor prescribed medications for individuals contending with pain.
Acupuncture can help manage certain kinds of pain, such as musculoskeletal and chronic pain. Bones, muscles, tendons, ligaments, joints and connective tissue comprise the musculoskeletal system. It is what supports and animates the body. Chronic pain is defined as lasting for more than 12 weeks, often persisting for months or years, after the initial injury or painful medical condition.
The FDA recommends health care providers know about the existence of, and when to apply nonpharmacologic therapies, such as acupuncture. With this knowledge, acupuncture may be included in a multidisciplinary plan to safely and effectively deal with physical pain.
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About the Author: Vanessa Vogel Batt, L.Ac., MSTOM, studied at the Pacific College of Oriental Medicine, and practiced acupuncture and Oriental medicine in New York for several years. Vanessa enjoys traveling the world, and has published articles on acupuncture and Oriental medicine and related health topics for websites and publications in both the U.S. and abroad.