Historically, we know for certain that Acupuncture has been used in China for over 3500 years. With the recent finding of the perfectly preserved remains of Utzi, the Ice Man, who came to the surface of a melting glacier in Western Europe, we have new evidence that the use of acupuncture for pain and arthritis extends back at least 5000 years and was also used over a far broader range of the world than previously assumed.
Acupuncture was used in animals as well as people. Modern day uses of acupuncture in the Western world focus primarily on joint pain, osteoarthritis, intervertebral disc disease, and neurologic disease with radiating nerve pain or limb weakness. However, Traditional Chinese Veterinary Medicine (TCVM) employs the use of acupuncture to improve the health and wellness of animals suffering from nearly any known disease in the book!
Through the use of acupuncture therapy, Dr. Verna has been able to improve and and nausea, liver and kidney disease, and pancreatitis. She has helped pets with weakness of the back and spine to walk again and be strong, reduced pain from surgical treatments, and helped slow the spread of cancers and decrease the side effects of chemotherapy. In short, Dr. Verna frequently incorporates acupuncture treatments into nearly every case and finds it helps almost every patient feel better, move better, eat better, and have a better quality of life overall.
How does acupuncture work?
There is still a lot we don't know about the use and function of many Traditional Chinese Medicine acupuncture points! We do know that electrical resistance is measurably decreased at each acupuncture point over surrounding tissues of the body, as measurable with a sensitive Ohm meter. We know that acupuncture points contain more arteries, veins, nerves, and lymphatics than adjacent tissues. And we know that plenty of "jogger's-high" endorphins and enkephalins are released to the body from acupuncture treatments, creating a nice relaxed state for the patient. Acupuncture also stimulates the release of natural morphine-like substances by the body, and some natural anti-inflammatories as well, which may explain some of the dramatic healing results.
There is still plenty to learn and plenty to prove scientifically about acupuncture, but the main thing we know is that it works very well to relieve pain and stress in pets of all species, and is a wonderful tool for assisting veterinary patients return to a healthy state of being. If your pet is suffering from any pain or lameness, change in appetite or digestion, or pretty much any disease or illness at all, a few sessions with Dr. Verna and some acupuncture needles is almost guaranteed to help him or her feel better fast!