Are you going to acupuncture church with me?

Are you going to acupuncture church with me?

By: 
Lorne Brown

This blog is intended to be a metaphor and not intended to be taken literally.

The Church used to have the power to dictate what society considered to be truth and what to dismiss as blasphemy. Today, the new bible is a scientific journal. It is much easier to have patients and referring physicians believe in what you offer and trust you with full confidence if the condition you are treating uses acupuncture that has been published in a journal.

How well versed are you in research on acupuncture? Can you quote the scriptures (studies) on the most common conditions you see in your practice? Are you able to better interpret the word of god (conclusion in the study) than the investigator? One of the best investments I made for myself that led to a busy practice is to not only know what studies are out there, but also how to interpret and understand a study.

Here is a great example. Many studies conclude acupuncture is just placebo but this conclusion is incorrect and misleads patients. By being versed in the scripture and by being able to interpret the study, you can communicate the truth (that acupuncture works!), which will gain patients’ trust and confidence, as well as stop dismissive physicians in their tracks.

In this example, the study has three arms: ‘real’ acupuncture, ‘sham’ acupuncture, and a control group. The control group does not receive any acupuncture and is often is the conventional standard of care. The ‘real’ acupuncture group and the ‘placebo’ acupuncture group often perform the same but both acupuncture groups do statistically better than the control group. The conclusion misleads the public and doctors by stating that acupuncture is not effective for the condition studied. A more accurate conclusion is acupuncture is better than standard of care. Often in these studies, the placebo treatment has not been tested to see if it is actually inert before the study. And most likely not if both acupuncture groups benefited equally. Regardless, acupuncture fared better than the usual recommended treatment, so the patient is better off receiving acupuncture.

You can educate your patient or the dismissive physician that the study is misleading and if you dig deeper, the study demonstrates that acupuncture is better than the standard care your doctor is recommending. Amen!

I invite you to join me at Acupuncture church this Sunday where services will be led by John McDonald and Gil Barzilay and they deliver sermons (courses) on acupuncture evidence and research. I promise you their lectures will be inspiring and will add the needed confidence and resources to help you build your practice and gain patients' trust. You practice a great medicine; take the time to learn how to communicate its effectiveness to the public and referring physicians by taking this lecture.

 
 

The Acupuncture Evidence Project: What does this mean for practitioners? by John McDonald [5 CEU/PDA/CPD]

When evidence is strong enough it leads to the inclusion of acupuncture as a treatment option in clinical practice guidelines developed by governments and peak medical advisory bodies. This course will examine a recent review of systematic reviews of acupuncture research, and provide information about how evidence levels and evidence quality are assessed in acupuncture research will be included.
Click here to learn more and register
 
 
Sourcing and Implementing TCM Research in Your Practice by Gil Barzilay [6 CEU/PDA/CPD]

With modern technology, research in Chinese Medicine has, over the last decade, improved dramatically and expanded beyond China providing much needed evidence as to why, how and where this ancient medicine works.

This course aims to provide the understanding of how to access, understand and utilize publications in TCM Research as a tool in our day to day as practitioners. We will first walk through the basics of Clinical research and evidence-based medicine, highlighting the most important terms relevant to this topic – what are the different clinical studies, how they are conducted, what are the measures and how to understand their significance. Then, we will look at how research is being done specifically in Chinese Medicine and where to find publications. Finally and most importantly, we will go through the importance of TCM Research as a tool for us as therapists – confirming "ancient medicine", providing ideas and protocols for our daily practice, and not less important, enabling us to improve communication with our customers and the Western Medical community, who at times challenge the benefits of TCM.

Throughout the course, up-to-date publications will be shared in certain therapeutic areas in order to clarify the theory in real publications so that you can be able to include research as part of your practice and enrich your knowledge.

Click here to learn more and register