So, as most of you may already know, I am an Occupational Therapist turned acupuncturist-herbalist. I love being an OT and I love practicing my new ancient medicine also! But as I read the February 2008 Advance Magazine for OT’s, I found Jay Goodman’s article on “Getting The Point: My Experience With Acupuncture”, I found myself reaching into the corner to grab my soapbox!
Let’s start with the magazine itself. Advance is a professional magazine that really has come to educationally support OT’s and the use of alternative treatments since we as OT’s are holistic in thinking anyhow. It’s a perfect combination! So, I am a bit confused as to why Advance chose to publish Mr. Goodman’s article. Perhaps it is in the name of “publishing the other side of the story”.
Mr. Goodman’s beliefs are clearly based in the Western-medical approach of explaining health/injury and how the body works. There were a few flaws with his article though. First, acupuncture is explained exceptionally well within it’s own theoretical context and we have been successful at treating/healing many ailments for thousands of years within that context. We only recently have been trying to fit the ancient medical art into the Western medical construct that is strongly based in the findings of evidence-based research. But this has not proven easy or capable of fitting nicely into a double blind, gold standard study format without challenges. But it is not for lack of trying and the NIH recognizes the need for research as noted by the sheer increase in the number of grants that have been awarded to research facilities for acupuncture in the past few years.
Mr. Goodman also failed to site any research findings to support his “theory”, just basic medical knowledge that doesn’t fully explain how acupuncture works. So, for him to say at the end of his article what “injuries” acupuncture “might” be good for is a slap in the face of all acupuncturists, OT’s, and PT’s who “might” think of making a referral or have found relief from receiving acupuncture. Please, Mr. Goodman, I won’t make recommendations about who should receive PT treatments if you refrain from making recommendations about what “might” be good for acupuncture.
Now, I put my soapbox back in it’s corner…
Check this link out to read Mr. Goodman’s article in it’s entirety.