Acupuncture

What is Acupuncture?

ennis-vet-clinic-acupunctureAcupuncture is defined as stimulation of specific points on the body, to encourage release of the body’s “natural pain killers”, including Endorphin. Acupuncture has multiple beneficial effects including:

  • pain relief
  • muscle relaxation
  • enhanced circulation
  • as well as stimulation of the body’s own defence system

The word acupuncture has a Latin origin, composed from 2 words ‘acus’=needle + ‘punctura’=puncture. Fine, sterile, stainless steel needles are inserted through the skin. This technique, commonly recognized as part of “The Traditional Chinese Medicine” has been successfully used for over 4000 years.

What can be treated?

In small animals acupuncture is most commonly used for:

  • Musculoskeletal Pain (e.g. back pain, muscle and ligament strains, arthritis, hip displasia)
  • Dermatological Conditions (e.g. lick granulomas, overgrooming in cats, atopy, improvement of wound healing)
  • Neurological Disorders (e.g. traumatic nerve injury)

There are multiple other conditions that have responded to acupuncture in the past.

How do Animals Respond to Acupuncture?

Most animals accept acupuncture very well and even relax during the treatment because of the relief of pain, due to reduction of spasm and stiffness in the muscle. The owner usually stays with the animal during the treatment. Not unexpectedly however, there can be occasionally a brief moment of sensitivity as the needle penetrates the skin.

Many insurance companies will cover acupuncture treatment costs as it is performed by a qualified veterinary surgeon with acupuncture qualification, but please check with your insurance company.

First consultation will take approximately 60 minutes, with the following appointment being slightly shorter. Most conditions require 4-6 treatments, initially about 1 week apart. The treatment interval afterwards varies and will be tailored to suit each individual pet’s condition.