Acupuncture Natural Fertility Center of Pennsylvania
Meredith Murphy, L.Ac., MaAC, DiplAc
215 W. Church Road, Suite 112, King of Prussia, PA 19406
610-265-1827 · Contact Us · Driving Directions

Frequently Asked Questions

Acupuncture is part of a comprehensive medical system, originating in China over 2000 years ago. In the last few decades, it has gained much popularity in the United States. Acupuncture utilizes fine needles which are inserted at specific points on the body. These needles regulate the body's natural energy, what is also referred to as Qi (pronounced "chee"). Health is seen as harmonious and balanced flow of Qi, when this flow is disrupted, illness occurs.

The needles used in acupuncture treatments are very thin, about the width of a hair. Unlike hypodermic needles, acupuncture needles are solid and thin, not designed to cut the skin. The needles do not hurt when inserted properly. Many people feel the Qi arriving at the point and experience a tingling or heavy sensation. We only use needles that are individually packaged, sterilized, and disposable- never saved or reused.

How Deep Do The Needles Go?

Acupuncture points are located near or on the surface of the skin. Usually needles are inserted form 1/4 to 1 inch in depth. Depth of insertion will depend on nature of the condition being treated, the patients' size, age, and constitution.

What other Oriental Medicine techniques can be used during a treatment?

Electro-Acupuncture is the use of small electrical currents through the acupuncture needles. Electro-stimulation is often used in conjunction with acupuncture to enhance a treatment. Electro-acupuncture has been proven to decrease pain, accelerate tissue healing, and significantly reduce inflammation, edema and swelling.

Moxibustion is a technique in which a Chinese herb called mugwort or Artemesia Vulgaris is used to apply heat to an acupuncture point. It is used to treat certain debilitating conditions as well as arthritis and pain. Moxa is usually rolled into a stick the size of a cigar, lit, and held over specific areas of the body. Moxa can also be placed onto the handle of an acupuncture needle, allowing deeper penetration of heat.

Cupping is a technique where a glass cup or bamboo jar is suctioned onto the body and allowed to sit for about ten minutes. This technique stimulates circulation, relieves swelling, and greatly enhances an acupuncture or Electro-acupuncture treatment. Cupping is used for many conditions including; back pain, shoulder pain, neck pain, common colds and influenza.

Tui Na is the traditional system of Chinese style physical therapy or massage. It is used in conjunction with acupuncture to enhance treatments in a variety of musculo-skeletal conditions.

What Do the Initials After the Acupuncturists Name Stand For?

While more often than not, the abbreviation after an acupuncturists name is L.Ac. (Licensed Acupuncturist), there are many other certifications and degrees that practitioners will proudly list.
Dipl.Ac.- Diplomat of Acupuncture
L.Ac.- Licensed Acupuncturist
M.Ac- Masters of Acupuncture
NCCAOM- National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine

What are the different types of acupuncture?

Acupuncture originated in China but has spread to Korea, Japan, Vietnam, Europe, and America. Different styles have developed over the centuries based on different opinions as to theory and technique.

Talk to your practitioner about his/her particular style and learn as much as possible about the treatment being proposed. While the basic theoretical principles of acupuncture remain the same, different styles of acupuncture differ greatly in technique and diagnosis. There is no evidence that one particular style is more effective than another, but you should know what you are getting into.

Traditional Chinese Acupuncture (TCM)
Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is the most common form of acupuncture studied and practiced in the United States.

Japanese Style Acupuncture
Japanese style acupuncture takes a more subtle route than TCM. Fewer and thinner needles are used with less stimulation.

Korean Hand Acupuncture
Points in the hand correspond to areas of the body and to certain disharmonies.

Auricular Acupuncture
Points in the ear correspond to areas of the body and to certain disharmonies. This system is commonly used for pain control and drug, alcohol, and nicotine addictions.

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