Surgical Rehabilitation With Acupuncture

The thought of going through a surgery can be pretty scary. The process of recovering from the surgery and the rehabilitation process can add to that angst. Fortunately, many surgeries are becoming less intrusive and physical therapy more refined. Acupuncture is an excellent tool you can use to effectively reduce your recovery time. This ancient form of medicine is being used in many modern settings for a multitude of conditions, including post-surgical recovery, fertility, addiction and more. Not only is acupuncture an effective therapy to help you heal better and faster, after your surgery, but it is also a fantastic modality to use before your surgery to boost your immune system. Taking it a step further, many patients have actually used acupuncture to avoid surgery all together for chronic back and joint issues.

There are the obvious risks that patients can encounter during the actually surgery, but there are possible post-surgical complications too. Some of the post-surgical complaints of patients are infections, delayed healing time, numbness and tingling, paralysis, injury to surrounding tissue, decreased range of motion, scarring, swelling and bruising. Many of these conditions can be addressed and minimized by starting acupuncture treatments as soon as possible after the surgery. It is possible to shorten your recovery time. It is possible to lower the risk of infection, lower pain levels and maintain your natural range of motion. All of this is possible with less time spent doing physical therapy.

So how can acupuncture actually do all this? By inserting the acupuncture needles, which are hair-thin, it creates a micro-trauma. This activates your bodies immune response sending more blood flow to the area. This increase in blood flow helps to bring oxygen and nutrients, remove cellular debris (from the major trauma of the surgery) and move stagnant lymphatic fluid, causing swelling and impeding natural blood flow. This immune response also increases your bodies white blood cell count, as well as releasing endorphins (your body’s natural pain-killer). Improving circulation around the area of trauma, will expediate recovery time, minimize pain, help you heal more completely and leave you feeling more balanced, physically and mentally.

It’s no secret that acupuncture works. It’s been documented for over 2500 years and thought to exist for approximately 5000 years. Pain management centers use acupuncture to ease patients pain and limit their use of NSAID’s and Cox-2 inhibitors, both of which can have serious side effects on your body. NSAID’s (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs) can cause gastrointestinal bleeding and Vioxx, a Cox-2 inhibitor, has been linked to myocardial infarction (heart attack). Studies show acupuncture to be effective in relieving pain, lowering stress and improving circulation, as well as many other conditions. With all these known benefits, it makes sense to use acupuncture for your post-surgical recovery.

The post-surgery phase is extremely important in the recovery process for sound healing. This is a critical time to maintain a healthy flow of energy and nutrients to the traumatized area. Using acupuncture and Chinese herbs can play a crucial role in a full recovery in less time with less pain. Visit us online for more information on post-surgical rehabilitation using acupuncture and Chinese medicine.

Bret Ellington is an acupuncture specialist in Orange County and is the owner of Inner Balance Acupuncture. Graduating with a Master of Science in Traditional Oriental Medicine, Bret is a Licensed Acupuncturist in California and Nationally. Specializing in women’s health, fertility and post-surgical recovery, he works with women trying to conceive naturally and through IVF. His patients can also get treatment for endometriosis, interstitial cystitis, menopause and PCOS. Please visit to learn more.

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