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Acupuncture Benefits for Carpal Tunnel and Tendonitis

acupuncture benefits for tendonitis

Tendonitis and carpal tunnel syndrome can both cause severe pain in the joints. Fortunately, acupuncture can help and offer much-needed relief.

Acupuncture Benefits for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

According to researchers, acupuncture therapy can be useful in alleviating causes and symptoms of carpal tunnel and other chronic pain ailments.

A recent study published in 2017 aimed to investigate the effect of acupuncture on carpal tunnel syndrome. In the study, 80 individuals were divided into three groups.

The first group was treated with verum electroacupuncture at the wrist. The second group received acupuncture therapy in an ankle on the opposite side of the affected wrist. Lastly, the third group was provided sham acupuncture treatment as a control. All the groups received 16 sessions of treatment over a period of 8 weeks. The participants were assessed once the treatment ended and then re-assessed three months later.

The results revealed that the two groups that received acupuncture showed physiological changes along with pain relief. Moreover, the group that got acupuncture treatment in their wrists displayed more benefits than the people who got acupuncture treatment in their ankles.

Another research completed the treatment and assessment of 26 patients with confirmed carpal tunnel syndrome. The participants were divided into two groups, where one received acupuncture and the other received electroacupuncture on both upper limbs. The findings of this research showed that electroacupuncture could improve symptomatology, whereas acupuncture can exert positive therapeutic effects for patients suffering from carpal tunnel syndrome, as shown by improved grip strength, physical provocation sign, electrophysiological function, and symptomatology.

Acupuncture Benefits for Tendonitis

Research also shows that acupuncture is useful in treating tendonitis.

A research from 2012 presents evidence to suggest that acupuncture might have a role in treating tendinopathy by facilitating tendon blood flow and fibroblastic activity.

Another randomized control trial in 2013 examined if acupuncture treatment would lead to improvements in people suffering from chronic Achilles tendinopathy. The participants included 64 randomized patients between the ages of 18 and 70 years with chronic Achilles tendinopathy. The research concluded that acupuncture intervention could improve pain and activity in patients with chronic Achilles tendinopathy as compared to eccentric exercises.

Moreover, a study published in the World Journal of Acupuncture-Moxibustion examined the clinical efficacy of electroacupuncture for treating Achilles tendonitis. Sixty patients suffering from Achilles tendonitis from the age of 18 to 55 were randomly divided into two groups – the electroacupuncture group and the low-frequency impulse group.

The research concluded that electroacupuncture has a better therapeutic effect as compared to low-frequency impulse therapy in treating Achilles tendonitis, which can improve or eliminate symptoms and improve the quality of life for patients.

Understanding Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Carpal tunnel syndrome is a fairly common condition that leads to numbness, pain and tingling in the arm and hand. The condition usually happens when the median nerve gets compressed or squeezed as it travels through the wrist.

In many individuals, carpal tunnel syndrome worsens over time. Thus, early diagnosis and treatment are essential.

Symptoms of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome include:

  • Tingling, pain, and numbness in your thumb and the first three fingers of your hand
  • A burning sensation that goes right up your arm
  • Wrist pain that leads to sleeping difficulties
  • Weakness in hand muscles.

Causes of Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Carpal tunnel syndrome can be a result of several different reasons, including:

  • Repetitive motions such as typing, playing the piano, or any other repeated movement that overextends your wrists.
  • Conditions such as obesity, diabetes, hypothyroidism, and rheumatoid arthritis

What Is Tendonitis?

Tendonitis (also known as tendinitis) is a condition where the connective tissues between your bones (tendons) and muscles get inflamed. It usually happens in the knee, elbow, hip, Achilles tendon, shoulder, and base of the thumb. Tendonitis can either be acute or chronic in nature.

Symptoms of Tendonitis

The symptoms happen where the tendon attaches to a bone. They typically include:

  • Redness, swelling, and heat
  • Pain which gets worse with movement
  • A lump might develop along the tendon
  • A sensation that the tendon is grating or crackling as it moves.

If there’s a rupture, a gap might be felt in the line of the tendon, making it difficult to move. Symptoms might last from a few days to multiple weeks or months.

Cause of Tendonitis

Tendonitis is mostly caused by repetitive action. You might develop tendonitis if you often make the same movement while working or playing sports. Tendonitis can also be caused by:

  • Aging
  • Injury
  • Particular diseases, like rheumatoid arthritis or diabetes
  • Some antibiotics

Athletes who play particular sports, such as golf, tennis, basketball, or bowling, are at an increased risk of tendonitis. You might also be at an increased risk if your job demands overhead lifting, physical exertion, or repetitive tasks or motions.

Last Few Words

If you are experiencing tendinitis or carpal tunnel syndrome, you should surely think of getting acupuncture treatments to relieve the pain associated with your condition. However, it is imperative that you get treatment from a professional who has met standards for training and education in acupuncture.

American College of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (ACAOM) is the only acupuncture and herbal clinic affiliated with a specialized medicine institution in Houston. You can call us today at 713-780-9786 to book an appointment with us today.  ACAOM also offers acupuncture services at Houston Methodist Hospital Wellness Services.  Call 713-441-5980 for an appointment.

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