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  • Writer's pictureAndre Shih

Months of Battling With Back Pain And Leg Weakness Ended by Acupuncture.

Male patient in his 70s, battling with lower back pain and weakness in the leg, had visited the family doctor and specialist numerous times, and done every single test that they could possibly do. But they still couldn't find out what's causing the pain. Between scheduled tests, he had been to the physiotherapy 3 times a week for a few weeks and then to acupuncture 3 times a week for a few weeks. It was always the same story. The pain would improve slightly the first week, and it would stop.

When he came to me, he had trouble lifting his right leg, couldn't put on his own sock, couldn't tie his own shoe, or couldn't get out of a car without help. His back hurt more when he tried to stand up from a chair or when he started walking. He came with his wife to the office. Somehow the wife wasn't very confident about me, probably because I looked very young or their experience with previous therapists. After listening to their story, I reassure them that I won't hold them up for more than 3 treatments if there was no improvement.

I was very confident and thinking that this was a piece of cake. I haven't had a lower back pain that I couldn't treat. I did my usual thing, but there was no change. "OK! No problem." I said to myself. I could use another approach next time. During the 2nd treatment, there was still no change. At that moment, I was thinking "Shit, I told them to try 3 times, and I have used up 2 already! What am I going to do if there was no change in the 3rd visit? Does that mean I have to turn them away? Does that mean I'm a failure?"

On the 3rd visit, I secretly preyed in my head "please let me help this man with his pain." There was finally a break through. I was able to find an area on his scalp to reduce his pain. Pain level was down to 1 out of 10, and the range of motion was improved. It was a great relief for me.

By the 5th visit, patient was already 80% better. He was able to get out of the car by himself. He could put on his own sock, tie his own shoe, and walk without pain. They were so happy that they could finally take a road trip they've been longing for.

Sometimes, I really don't think that I deserve all the credit of a successful treatment. I feel there is a greater being high above that's guiding me to help others.

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