Treated Conditions / Musculoskeletal / Back Pain

Millions of people suffer with low back pain, and it is one of the top reasons people seek medical treatment. Back problems are also, by far, the primary reason for appointments with acupuncturists.

Our body depends on the spinal column for structural stability. The shoulders, rib cage and pelvis are anchored to the spine for strength and support.

We also depend on the spine for mobility – the ability to twist, bend and flex the body for different activities. The spine is constructed of 24 jointed bones, or vertebrae, stacked from pelvis to the skull in a gentle “S” curve.

Between the vertebrae are spongy discs that cushion the bones and bond the stack together. Pairs of bony projections, called facets, connect the rear of each vertebra to form a series of interlocking joints. The column is wrapped tightly in ligaments and supported by muscle.

More than 80% of Americans will have back pain at some point in their life. Low back pain usually emanates from degenerative changes to the lumbar discs. With aging, the resilient disc material dries-out, shrinks and loses some of its “spring.” Under the stress of lifting, coughing, sitting improperly or bad posture, the deteriorated disc can bulge or even rupture, or “herniate,” spilling its spongy pulp into the surrounding space.

A herniated disc can press on the adjacent nerve root. This irritation can cause pain, numbness and tingling, or painful muscle spasm. Loss of disc thickness can also cause wear and arthritic enlargement of the facet joint, constricting the space between the vertebrae leading to abnormal pressure on the nerve.
But does acupuncture really help these patients?

For people with chronic low back pain, acupuncture is effective in providing considerable pain relief. For more than 2500 years, generations of patients and physicians have depended on traditional medicine for the relief of painful conditions of all sorts, including for low back pain, sciatica, febromialgia, neuritis, and arthritis of the spine.

How Does Acupuncture help back pain?

Acupuncture is best known for its ability to stop pain in general. It is effective in treating both acute and chronic back pain because it lessens the pain response locally as it relaxes nearby muscles. A negative pain cycle is broken when muscle spasms stop, adjacent muscle groups no longer compensate, and range of motion then increases as the pain levels decrease. Acupuncture accomplishes this by:

  • Relaxing muscles, which slows spasms until they release.
  • Decreasing local inflammation by increasing local blood circulation
    and reducing swelling.
  • Stimulating the release of natural endorphins that diminish the pain response.

Traditional herbal medicine, acupuncture laser therapy, and biopuncture (homeopathy injections or mesotherapy) have also proved to be a useful tools to address pain in acute and chronic conditions. Depending on which channels are involved, disc disease, neuralgia, sciatica, muscle strain, spinal stenosis, and pain resulting from surgery and trauma can be helped by acupuncture. Even patients who have not done well after surgery may benefit from acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine.


Vita-Health Acupuncture and Wellness Center
12301 Taft St #200, Pembroke Pines, FL 33026
Phone: (954) 880-0090