Monday, April 27, 2009

Neuropathy and Acupuncture

Neuropathy and Acupuncture
by David and Melissa Sokulski, L.Ac.

Neuropathy, or Peripheral Neuropathy, is defined as having numbness, tingling or lack of sensation in nerves especially of the hands and feet (the periphery.) It is a fairly common symptom, occurring in people with spinal injuries, diabetes, and genetic conditions such as Charcot-Marie-Tooth Syndrome. Acupuncture can be an effective way to treat these symptoms, bringing energy, life and feeling back into the extremities.

Neuropathy is a serious symptom, which often effects people's quality of life. When we don't feel parts of our body, we are more prone to injury and infection, as well as finding difficulty in daily tasks such as walking, fine motor work, or gripping. People who have this symptom as part of a genetic disorder also deal with the fears and hopes that go along with having a rare medical disorder.

Acupuncture is a powerful tool not only to balance qi - or energy - in the body, but to bring peace, hope and alignment into the mind, emotions and spirit as well.

When we have numbness in our peripheries, the way Eastern medicine views this is that not enough qi (energy) is reaching these areas. This can be for a variety of reasons, but mainly either

  1. there is too little energy in that organ system/meridian (energy pathway)
  2. something is blocking the energy from reaching the area.

There is also often a combination of the two, and often multiple organ systems/meridians involved. There are also different causes for the condition. Each of these things is considered and address by the acupuncturist, and a treatment plan which best suits the patient is mapped out.

Acupuncture often brings immediate relief, though it will likely take a series of treatments for the feeling to come back completely and for the body to stay in balance, providing lasting effects. How often or how long treatment should proceed will be individual, depending on the cause and the overall constitution and health of the patient.

Acupuncture works by treating the person as a whole, balancing body, mind and spirit, and allowing the body to do what it needs to do to heal itself. Acupuncture helps remove blocks, helps the body focus on increasing energy in areas of deficiency, help the patient be more present and focused, but ultimately it is our own body's and energy that are able to heal.

To schedule an appointment or for more information, please call David Sokulski, PA licensed acupuncturist, at (412) 381-0116, or email him at

Dave also offers FREE 20 minute consultations, either by phone or in person at the Birch Center for Health. Please call today to schedule your appointment: (412) 381-0116.


Dave recently gave a talk to a support group for people living with Charcot-Marie-Tooth disorder.

Some notes on Charcot-Marie-Tooth Disorders (from CMT Facts III, Special Report):

  • CMT is the most common inherited neuropathy, affecting about 125,000 Americans
  • CMT is also known as peroneal muscular atrophy and hereditary motor sensory neuropathy
  • does not affect life expectancy
  • can vary greatly in severity, even within a family
  • is the focus of significant genetic research

More information can be found by contacting:

Charcot-Marie-Tooth Association
2700 Chestnut Parkway
Chester, PA 19013

People can join the association and receive their newsletter by contacting them through the address above, or by calling Pennsylvania Department of State at: 1-800-732-0999.