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Why you might need it

Acupuncture has been practised as part of Traditional Chinese Medicine for over 5,000 years, and recently has become more common in Western medicine. In Western scientific terms, acupuncture works by stimulating the brain and spinal cord to produce natural chemicals in the body. These chemicals include endorphins to relieve pain, melatonin to encourage sleep, and serotonin to enhance feelings of well-being, therefore assisting the body's natural healing process. Quality research supports the effectiveness in the treatment of low back pain, neck pain, headaches, and knee osteoarthritis.


When is treatment with acupuncture appropriate?

Acupuncture maybe suggested when your Specialist Physiotherapist believes it may be the most effective treatment for your condition, or that it might help to improve the effectiveness of your overall treatment. Therefore, acupuncture may be used as a stand alone treatment, or it may be offered in conjunction with other physiotherapy treatments to help achieve the best result for you as an individual.


Preparing for treatment

At your first appointment you will be assessed by a Specialist Physiotherapist who will take a detailed history and thoroughly assess your condition, undertake a general examination and review and discuss potential underlying causes before performing acupuncture. Please ensure you eat meals as normal prior to acupuncture treatment but avoid alcohol or excessive exercise for one hour before or after a session.


What conditions is acupuncture used to treat?

Conditions treated by acupuncture include; back pain (acute or chronic), whiplash, sports injuries, soft tissue injuries, headaches - including migraine, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome, bowel and bladder dysfunction.


Does acupuncture work?

Yes, acupuncture can work. Success generally depends on a number of factors, which include; a person's general health, the condition, the severity and the duration of the condition, the individual.


What does acupuncture treatment involve?

Your specialist physiotherapist will use sterile, single use needles. The needles are fine (a lot finer than an injection needle). They are tapped gently through the skin and into the underlying tissue. Acupuncture needling is not usually painful however, some people report a pinprick or scratch like sensation. Once the needles are in place you may feel a mild ache, numbness, warm, or heavy sensation in and around the needle. This is a sign that the body's inbuilt pain relieving mechanisms are being stimulated. During treatment your physiotherapist may gently stimulate the needles. Patients may experience a pleasant relaxed feeling, and on occasion may also feel drowsy during treatment.


How many needles will be used?

Normally between 2-16 needles are used, and these can be left in position for as little as 1-2 minutes. More commonly needles will be in place for 10-30 minutes.


How many treatments are required?

Research suggests that for a longstanding condition such as low back pain, a course of 6-10 treatments is required to achieve the best results. The number of acupuncture treatments will vary depending on the condition being treated and how the individual responds. Each treatment will be tailored to suit the individual and their condition.


Is acupuncture safe?

Acupuncture is very safe and serious complications are rare. All specialist physiotherapists providing acupuncture at Spire Norwich Hospital are members of the Acupuncture Association of Chartered Physiotherapists (AACP). This means that they are bound by professional codes of conduct.


Why choose Spire?

We have a leading reputation for the high quality clinical care, a network of 38 immaculate, modern hospitals and world-class specialists who all want the same thing – to help you live your life to the fullest.


How much does it cost?

A price for this treatment is available on enquiry. You can trust Spire Norwich Hospital to provide you with a single, fixed price* so there are no surprises. And, through our carefully chosen partner you can even be considered for interest free finance. We’re here to help you with making these important choices, so you’re then free to concentrate on your treatment and on getting back to being you. Important: Please read Spire’s terms and conditions for full details of what’s included and excluded in your fixed price* when paying for yourself. * Zebra Finance Ltd trading as Zebra Health Finance , Lincoln House, Stephensons Way, Wyvern Business Park, Derby, DE21 6LY.


Making an appointment

The Acupuncture Clinic is open to all, for further information please contact our Private Patient Advisors on 01603 255 614 or complete the enquiry form at the top of this page.