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Treating Autoimmune Disease with Chinese Medicine and Acupuncture

By Linda Gibbons, L.Ac.

A diagnosis of an autoimmune disease is becoming more commonplace in today’s world.  According to the American Autoimmune Related Disease Association’s current statistics, 1 out of every 24 men and 1 out of every 12 women have autoimmune disease.  Some of the increase may be due to more accurate diagnoses, but certainly not all.   The combination of industrial toxins in our water, air and soil, a food supply rapidly degrading into processed/GMO foods that our bodies have not adapted to, and antibiotic overuse, are all likely contributing to this increase.

Autoimmune diseases include such diverse medical conditions as Type I diabetes, Hashimoto’s, Sjogren’s, multiple sclerosis, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, scleroderma, and Crohn’s.  The common link between al l these diseases is that the patient’s immune system is attacking his/her own tissues.  The type of tissue being attacked will identify the autoimmune disease, i.e. the pancreas in Type I diabetes and the myelin sheath in M.S.

A large percentage of my practice is devoted to treating people with autoimmune diseases.  Why?  I think it is because many people with autoimmune disease are still suffering greatly after being treated with all that western medicine has to offer.  Yes, there are powerful drugs that can treat some of the most troubling symptoms of these diseases, but they come with sometimes debilitating side effects and do not treat the underlying conditions.

I do not claim to be able to “cure” an autoimmune disease, but Chinese medicine and diet/lifestyle changes can go a long way toward managing the disease and keeping the tissue destruction from getting worse.  Unfortunately, by the time a patient has been diagnosed with an autoimmune disease via blood tests, nerve conduction tests, etc, the tissue destruction is often significant.  Even so, Chinese medicine and acupuncture can still help people with severe symptoms.

In my practice I have also treated many patients that have not been formally diagnosed with autoimmune diseases, but have a whole litany of common complaints that may be the beginning or middle stages of autoimmune disease.  These include digestive problems such as food sensitivities, allergies/sinusitis, inflammation/pain of joints, foggy thinking, and inability to lose weight.

My treatment strategies for treating someone with autoimmune disease or who suspects they may have autoimmune disease include acupuncture for pain and stress relief, herbal formulas when appropriate, and dietary/lifestyle suggestions to manage symptoms and prevent further tissue damage.

Please call/email me if you have questions or to make an appointment. – 720.530.8218

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Linda has retired.

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