Acupuncture is an important component of traditional Chinese medicine and is being preferred by many even today. In this method, small needles are inserted into patient's body and the method has been in practice since 100B.C. Several scientists and doctors questioned the authenticity of acupuncture yet its popularity is increasing day by day. Before opting for acupuncture, especially for chronic pain relief, you must know the effectiveness of this alternative medicine.
Basis: Acupuncture was designed based on the concept of .qi., a life force energy which flows through the important organs of the body. It flows through meridians and in general, acupuncture needles are inserted along these channels to treat diseases. Some vital points which are not part of these meridians but needles are inserted are known as "A-shi" points.
According to traditional Chinese medicine, all the diseases can be cured by correcting the imbalances in the body and this can be achieved through different procedures in which this needle-based treating technique is one of them. In the early days, those who were trained in this alternative medicine tried to find out the reason for disease by examining the patient's eyes, pulse, tongue, change in voice modulation etc.
In the USA, acupuncture needles are not experimental medical devices anymore and FDA accepted them as medical instruments. But they have to be manufactured and used only after meeting certain standards and these needles have to be sterilized every time after use. If you are thinking of trying this alternative medicine, make sure that you have opted for the right health centre. Despite its exponential increase in popularity over the years, some scientific reports questioned the results of acupuncture and some popular doctors publically expressed their displeasure over the growing popularity of this alternative medicine.

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Studies on Acupuncture and Results More than 4000 journals published their reports, research papers on the scientific validity and results of acupuncture. Some of these reports are completely against to acupuncture but their efforts failed miserably as several new patients are trying and getting relief from their health problems practising this alternative medicine. Most of the reports revealed that it is a cost-effective solution for chronic pain related problems and here is the synopsis of some popular scientific reports on acupuncture. Cochrane reviews claimed that this method is effective in treating neck pain, shoulder pain and other chronic pain problems. They also claimed that results are only short-term based and this procedure is yet to prove its results in the long term. Some reports claimed that pain relief through acupuncture can be explained through Placebo effect, in which patients are told that treatment was going on without actually giving treatment.
Report of systematic reviews claimed that distinguished results can't alone be sufficient to prove the worthiness of this medical procedure but accepted the fact that it is cost-effective compared to standard medical care.

Side effects: When acupuncture is performed by an expert with single time use needles, there are no or minor side effects. The proven history of this medicine and its increasing popularity are more than enough to prove that it is safe. Some of the minor side effects include pain at needle inserted places, dizziness for some time etc. These are minor problems compared to side effects caused by powerful antibiotics and allopathic medicines.

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