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Q: I have had migraines for several years now and have just started to have acupuncture, I have only had three treatments but already I do not need my daily pills. Can you tell me how often you would say I needed to have acupuncture?

A: It is very difficult to say how often you should have treatments. With the positive response that you have had to treatment, it sounds as though you will be able to scale down to a monthly maintenance treatment very soon. My patients and I try to come up with the treatment goals and expectations at the first appointment. We then decide on the number of treatments that the patient will commit to to achieve that goal. Most people will commit to 8-24 treatments. This allows us time to gauge the response of the body to acupuncture and reassess the treatment plan if we are not achieving the expected results.

Once the expectations have been met, whether it is to be off daily medication or a 80% decrease in the frequency and intensity of the migraines, then the preventative treatment plan needs to be discussed.  You will have to see how your body responds. You may never need to come back for treatments, or you may come in every three months for a tuneup. If your condition is exacerbated by something in your environment or daily activities, then the acupuncture treatments will continue on a more regular basis.

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