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Fibromyalgia Syndrome and Oriental Medicine

Fibromyalgia Syndrome (FMS) affects an estimated two percent of the population. Conventional therapies largely comprised of prescribing different medications for the symptoms in a trial and error approach. These conventional therapies have had limited success in treating this complex and unexplained condition. Research shows as many as 90 percent of people with fibromyalgia have turned to complimentary and alternative medicine to manage their symptoms.

Acupuncture, in particular, has become a popular treatment choice. Acupuncture has shown to be an effective treatment for Fibromyalgia Syndrome.

Fibromyalgia is a medically unexplained syndrome characterized by chronic widespread pain. Symptoms may include a heightened and painful response to pressure, insomnia, fatigue, and depression. Fibromyalgia is diagnosed when there is a history of widespread pain in all four quadrants of the body for a minimum duration of three months — and that pain exists when pressure is applied to at least 11 of 18 designated tender points on the body. This condition does not result in any physical damage to the body, or its tissues, and there are no laboratory tests which can confirm this diagnosis. Symptoms often begin after a physical or emotional trauma, but in many cases there appears to be no triggering event. Women are more prone to develop the disorder than are men, and the risk of fibromyalgia increases with age.

Oriental Medicine does not recognize fibromyalgia as one particular disease pattern. Instead, it aims to treat the specific symptoms that are unique to each individual depending on their constitution, intensity and location of their pain, and an array of other signs and symptoms. Therefore, if ten people are treated with Oriental medicine for fibromyalgia, each of these ten people will receive a unique, customized treatment with different acupuncture points, different herbs and different lifestyle and dietary recommendations.

If you have fibromyalgia, Acupuncture and Oriental medicine may help to ease symptoms and help reclaim health and vitality.


Author – Jim Burnis is a local Gold Canyon Acupuncturist –, 480-671-5178, contact Jim Burnis

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