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All Complementary Treatments Articles

Acupuncture has been used for more than 2,000 years throughout Asia and is an important component of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). Based on the concept of qi – the vital energy in the body that flows along well-defined meridians, acupuncture is thought to restore any imbalance in the energy flow responsible for health.
This article is part of a series on the use of light therapy for pain management.
A patient-based outcome review of at-home pain management devices, including the Willow Curve, Quell, and VibraCool
A review of non-pharmacological self-management options for chronic pain patients to apply. Plus: a new self-management strategy for primary care providers.
Scientific evidence for this minimally invasive procedure’s effectiveness, along with patient selection and condition-specific success stories, are addressed.
OSKA PEMF Pain Relief Device: A Mini Review Trial
The next evolution of virtual reality may provide patients experiencing chronic pain with just enough distraction to feel like themselves again.
Integrative pain care provides patients with alternative treatment and pain management options, such as yoga, acupuncture, and stress reduction programs.
Learn how fascial needle manipulation (acupuncture) helped to relieve pain in a patient whose low back pain was unresponsive to medications.
Complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) can occur with or without injury or noxious stimuli.
Learn more about how weight loss and good nutrition can combine to reduce pain and inflammation in patients with chronic pain.
Learn more about how adopting guided imagery, mindful meditation, and/or hypnosis can help reduce pain, anxiety, and depression among patients with acute and chronic pain.
Traditional Chinese medicine, especially acupuncture, is a popular form of therapy embraced by pain patients. Learn more about these alternative therapies.
The biopsychosocial-spiritual approach emphasizes the patient's responsibility for self-management. Learn how spirituality and Healing Touch can be incorporated in your pain management armamentarium.
What if prolotherapy and then platelet rich prolotherapy (PRP) were to fail? What is the next step, short of surgery (if surgery is even an option)? Since the early 1990s there has been an interest in “adult stem cells”—undifferentiated cells that can be isolated from many tissues in all stages of life.1
Prolotherapy has been a alternative pain treatment since ancient times. Learn more about the history of prolotherapy, as well as current applications.
When I first began work in the field of pain psychology, I wanted to be as helpful as I could be to my patients and to be seen as fully prepared and competent by my referral sources. However, as I began to read books and attend conferences “to get up to speed,” I was overwhelmed by the variety of services and offerings that experienced practitioners offered.
Low level laser therapy helps reduce postherpetic neuralgia pain (following shingles) and offers clinicians an effective adjunct to conventional therapies.
Parents of children with JIA often turn to complementary and alternative approaches to handle their child’s disease. Family values and resources play a critical role in determining which integrative therapies to recommend first. Therefore, forming a collaborative partnership with patients and their families is essential for avoiding “treatment fatigue” and improving overall success.
Harp music used as a form of therapy can reduce pain and anxiety, enhancing quality of life.
Ask the Expert: a pain management specialist answers a question about what to do with the patient who insists on only alternative treatments.
This article explores the National Institutes of Health’s National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine’s efforts to provide evidence-based rationale for CAM therapies.
Exploring the use of quantum-based energy medicine modalities for the treatment of pain in clinical practice.
Most clinicians who practice pain management are familiar with the contributions of Drs.
The application of shockwave myotripsy in the treatment of enthesopathic and/or tendinopathic lesions is becoming more popular. Learn more in this article.
Foods can stimulate inflammation and lead to the development of a chronic pro-inflammatory state. Article details the importance of consuming anti-inflammatory foods.
The first article in a 3-part series focuses on the clinical benefits of shock wave therapy for conditions that historically have been recalcitrant to conventional treatments.
Medical devices that administer electricity, or an agent derived from electricity, have evolved over the years. Learn more in the October 2012 Editor's Memo.
Article highlights 5 stories of patients who used music therapy to help manage their various types of chronic pain.
Debilitating foot and ankle pain are the bane of many patients. One potential less-invasive treatment option is the use of low-energy light.
Letters to the Editor from the November/December 2011 issue of Practical Pain Management.
The newest form of prolotherapy, known as stem cell prolotherapy, is used in difficult cases or where accelerated musculoskeletal healing is desired. Read about this chronic pain treatment.
An interview with the associate chief legal officer at the Mayo Clinic on the legal implications of medical marijuana.
Many serious conditions and diseases have their own recommended diet. Considerable scientific information and clinical observation suggest that chronic pain needs a specialized diet, too.
Patients with chronic pain who seek medical advice about choosing a vitamin or supplement need to be educated about the risks/benefits of these agents. This article reviews the evidence for the most common supplements used to treat pain conditions such as fibromyalgia, headaches, osteoarthritis, and rheumatoid arthritis.
Acupuncture is an increasingly valuable and effective tool used by medical practitioners to relieve pain. Newer acupuncture methods that use transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS), light, sound, piezoelectric and magnetic energies have shown success in relieving pain, but there have been few efforts to use all of these treatment modalities together.
During pregnancy, a multitude of new stressors are introduced to the female body as it undergoes physiologic changes. One of the most common complaints is low back pain, which has been reported to affect between 50% and 80% of all pregnant women. But how should it be treated? Here are nonpharmacologic options.
A magnetic field (MF) is a magnetic force that extends out from a magnet and can be either static or dynamic. These MFs are produced by electric currents and specifically as a result of electron movement. But what does that have to do with pain management? Learn in this article
Editor of Practical Pain Management discusses the important developments in electromedicine, starting with Dr. Luigi Galvani.
A doctor with more than a decade using therapeutic lasers to treat chronic pain writes on how lasers can be used in the treatment of chronic low back pain. Learn more about this complementary pain treatment.
Cranial electrotherapy stimulation (CES) is the use of low-level microcurrent applied through the head to the brain for medical and psychiatric/psychological purposes. Although CES is primarily used for the management of anxiety, insomnia, and depression, there is a growing body of evidence that suggests that it will play a role in pain management.
Electric and magnetic fields have been used in medicine for the treatment of pain, ablation of tissue, and wound healing for more than 75 years. More recently, pulsed radio frequency energy fields have been used for the treatment of bone healing, pain, and wound healing of soft tissue. In this review, pulsed radio frequency energy fields will be discussed in relation to use in pain management.
Many facts are known about body electricity and magnetism. Most of these facts, however, have little established practicality relative to pain treatment. We know enough, however, to provide a scientific rationale for the various electromagnetic measures being used today.
Low level laser therapy not only promotes healing in injured cells, but it also stimulates the generation of endorphins that control pain regardless of the location. Low level laser therapy interrupts the pain process by delivering electrons back to the injured cells to aid in healing.
Low Level Laser Therapy: A Clinician's View
It is now understood that chronic pain can cause serious mental, social, employment, family, and marital problems, while increasing stress and shortening life.
Tips on which type of low-level laser to use for your chronic pain patients: You can't use the same laser for every pain patient.
A brief review of some of the basic concepts of low level laser therapy, clinical indications for its use, and treatment options when applying therapeutic lasers to patients in pain.
Find out what every pain therapist should know about the physiological consequences of guided imagery.
This article gives an overview of trigger point low level laser therapy. Includes a case study that documents a trapezius trigger point eradication after three sessions of far infrared laser irradiation and confirms with anatomic "before-and-after" diagnostic ultra-sonographs.
Low energy laser therapy has been shown, at appropriate dosimetry, wavelength, duration, and site-specific application, to reduce tissue pain/tenderness, normalize circulation patterns in tissue trauma, and increase collagen formation in wounds.
Low Level Laser Therapy (LLLT) precipitates a complex set of physiological interactions at the cellular level that reduces acute inflammation, reduces pain, and accelerates tissue healing.
Article covers acupuncture as a pain management technique for cranio-cervical and temporomandibular disorders
A non-invasive approach to treating pain conditions, magnetic therapy offers alternative to traditional medicine.
H-Wave technology is built on the work of those pioneers of electro-biology who paved the way and helped shape this technology.
Therapeutic laser has been shown to have many interesting effects on immune function. In this article I will present some of the scientific studies that have been published relating to immune modulation.
History of Botanicals and Homeopathy
One of the areas of laser therapy that is rather interesting and promises significant potential for healing is application of therapeutic laser to neurological conditions. In this article, I will present a review of scientific studies relative to neurological effects of laser and discuss some of the more promising applications.
This article explains the few contraindications of therapeutic laser therapy, including its affect on pregnancy, cancer, and diabetes.
Animal research together with five patient case reports demonstrate that platelet rich plasma prolotherapy (PRPP) is effective in the treatment of MRI-documented meniscal tears.
Evidence supports considering therapeutic laser in the treatment and rehabilitation of Achilles tendonitis alone or in combination with more conventional therapies for chronic pain patients.
Many laser therapy equipment manufacturers are designing and selling emitters or probes that contain both laser and non-coherent light diodes together in a hybrid emitter to harness the effects of both. Should you be using these?
In addition to traditional prolotherapy, platelet-rich plasma and stem cells are also available to enhance healing of musculoskeletal injuries and mitigation of pain.
Therapeutic laser shows promise as an accelerator of healing and neural regeneration in the central nervous system. Could be an effective chronic pain treatment.
In this retrospective observational study of chronic unresolved ankle pain, Hackett-Hemwall dextrose prolotherapy helped promote a measurable decrease in the pain and stiffness of the treated joints and improvement in clinically-relevant parameters.
Certain non-prescription, alternative/complementary measures can be easily, conveniently, and inexpensively incorporated into routine pain practice. Details on these alternative treatments that can blend with prescription medication treatment.
Shoulder pain is a common complication in hemiplegic and spinal cord injured patients. It usually starts during the acute rehabilitation phase leading to further activity limitations. Learn what can be done with lasers to treat this shoulder pain.
Article gives an overview of treating shoulder pain in hemiplegic and spinal cord injured patients. Platelet rich plasma in prolotherapy is discussed.
This article explains the treatment of scapulohumeral periarthritis and post-traumatic joint pain. Includes a review of a Russian hospital-based study using magneto-laser therapy.
Low-level laser therapy (LLLT) accelerated healing and improved symptoms and outcome for second degree scalding burns on human skin for the subject patient. Learn more about this pain management technique and if you should use it.
Learn about an innovative method for determining optimal treatment location and effectiveness of laser therapy as a treatment option for chronic pain patients. Infrared imaging may be a helpful treatment.
Find out about an innovative method for determining optimal treatment location and effectiveness. Infrared imaging may be a useful treatment for chronic pain patients.
Neural therapy is a powerful treatment that can be quite effective in resolving autonomic nervous system dysfunction and pain, especially in the complex pain patient.
This retrospective observational study of patients with unresolved wrist pain noted improvements in many quality of life parameters after Hackett-Hemwall dextrose prolotherapy.
A review of a Russian stomatological hospital based study indicated magneto-laser therapy resulted in greater positive results than traditional pharmacological and physiotherapeutic treatment.
The recent introduction of Fourth Generation (G4) technology— mechanical and electrical laser hybrids—have inspired a whole new classification of light therapy and opened up a new realm of possibilities. These new technologies offer the promise of improved effectiveness and clinical outcomes
The tertiary effects of phototherapy—namely, immune system stimulation, increases in endorphin production, and lymphatic stimulation—help to attain optimal clinical outcomes.
Lasers provide a simple, and effective, non-invasive alternative to needle acupuncture in treating musculoskeletal pain.
An effective non-surgical treatment option for golf-related injuries, including low back pain, lateral and medial epicondylitis, wrist ligament injuries, shoulder injuries, and other musculoskeletal joint pain.
A review of the historical generations of laser technology that leads up to the present. Lasers can be used in pain management in treating chronic or intractable pain.
This new class of therapeutic lasers of laser therapy delivers higher-powered penetrating infrared energy to deeper target sites, as well as shortening treatment times for wide area applications. Therapeutic lasers can be used for chronic pain patients.
The Gallium Arsenide (GaAs) infrared laser provides the deepest penetration of body tissue of any laser currently available and can be utilized in treating a wide range of painful conditions.
Lasers may be used to bring chronic pain relief. Article addresses pain relief strategies using a continuous output gallium-aluminum arsenide (GaAlAs) laser.
Effects at the cellular level increase ATP energy and DNA synthesis and benefit acute and chronic musculoskeletal aches and pains, chronic inflammation, acute soft-tissue injuries, as well as other conditions.
A review of seminal works on the theory of non-mechanistic, quantum physics effects of low level energy on biological systems.
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