What are the health benefits and risks of acupuncture?
All therapies have benefits and risks.
The possible benefits of acupuncture are:
– When performed correctly it is safe
– There are very few side effects
– It is a very effective combination treatment
– It is effective in controlling some types of pain
– It may be considered for patients who do not respond to pain medications
– It is a useful alternative for patients who do not want to take pain medications.
The possible risks of acupuncture are:
– It is dangerous if the patient has a bleeding disorder
– It the dangerous if the patient is taking blood thinners
– There may be bleeding, bruising and soreness at the insertion sites
– The needle may break and damage an internal organ (very rare)
– Unsterilized needles may infect the patient
– When inserted deeply into the chest or upper back there is a risk of collapsed lung (very rare).