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Chinese medicine


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#1 ecogirl

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Posted 30 December 2008 - 12:45 PM

Does anyone have any experience with Chinese herbs and/or acupuncture for scleroderma? Knowledge on how to find a good chinese medicine doctor? After years of Western medicine, which I have been happy with, I would like to supplement it with an eastern approach. So any advice, info, experiences would be great to read! Thanks.

#2 Amanda Thorpe

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Posted 30 December 2008 - 01:22 PM

Shelley's just started a post about natural pain remedies, you might pick up info from that thread.

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#3 Shelley Ensz

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Posted 30 December 2008 - 01:29 PM

Hi Ecogirl,

We do have a section on Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and Scleroderma on the main site, on our Alternative Therapies and Scleroderma page.

Basically, as I understand it (and I am not a doctor, I have no medical training at all), the abstract we list from Mayo Clinic indicates that acupuncture appears to have some usefulness for fibromyalgia symptoms. Many of us have fibromyalgia along with scleroderma, so it is possible it may help with muscle pain for some people.

As I understand it, they really don't have any better treatments for scleroderma in China than we do here, and incredibly, many Chinese centers that treat scleroderma actually rely on Western treatments. You'll notice that our main site is also in Chinese because they are impressed with the information we offer on our (Western) site.

Unproven Chinese treatments for scleroderma include such delicacies as dried earthworms, beetles, scorpions and centipedes. Which might be why they tend to rely on Western methods for this very difficult, and all too often deadly, disease. You think? :blink:

However there are many other "natural" things that can be done to improve some scleroderma symptoms. Including such simple things as taking your blood pressure every day, to catch sudden kidney failure before it causes noticeable symptoms.
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The most important thing in the world to know about scleroderma is sclero.org.

#4 Shelley Ensz

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Posted 30 December 2008 - 02:16 PM

I should also mention that this thread can easily be what we call a "slippery slope" discussion, since we have a lot of Forum Guidelines regarding Alternative medicine...what is proven, not proven, and so forth. If we didn't, our forum would simply be overwhelmed with snake oil salesmen!

So people inclined to participate in this discussion would first want to read our Forum Guidelines on Alternative Therapies You might be surprised as to what has been proven effective...and what has been disproven in regard to "natural" remedies for scleroderma.

Moderators will freely edit anything outside our guidelines, of course, and if it becomes too challenging to deal with, this thread might be eliminated. But if everyone helps by reading the Guideline link above, and communicating by Private Messages when appropriate (straight to the person who asked the question), perhaps that can be averted.
Warm Hugs,

Shelley Ensz
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International Scleroderma Network (ISN)
Hotline and Donations: 1-800-564-7099

The most important thing in the world to know about scleroderma is sclero.org.

#5 Jeannie McClelland

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Posted 30 December 2008 - 05:42 PM

Just a comment on how to go about finding an acupuncturist -

In Britain, at least, there are formal training and licensing programmes, including college degrees. There are also accreditation boards. I would want to know where the practitioner trained, what licenses he/she holds, board certified or not, how long in practice, and what insurance he/she carries. Then I'd want to find out more about the institution that did the training.

I know my medical insurance will pay for acupuncture and has a list of preferred providers. I would probably use that list as a first recommendation.
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#6 Snowbird

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Posted 31 December 2008 - 12:54 PM

Hi Ecogirl

I know a couple of good TCM Doctors in Ontario, Canada...I see one actually for my Fibromyalgia and he has helped me a lot with that....but not sure what country you are in so not sure if I can help? I've not done any acupuncture with either of them but they both come very highly recommended in all their treatments. I travel a distance to see them but I have no interest in travelling hours each way every week for acupuncture treatments although I've been told they would also help. PM me if you are looking in that area?
Sending good wishes your way!