Neurofunctional acupuncture also known as contemporary acupuncture takes an ancient therapy and re-defines its mechanisms and effects using present-day scientific understanding of human physiology. At first glance, it may look strikingly similar to traditional Chinese acupuncture, as it involves thin needles inserted into various points in the body, including hands, feet, and scalp, where it is left in place for a period of time before removal.
However, considerable differences exist between neurofunctional medical acupuncture and traditional Chinese acupuncture. In neurofunctional acupuncture, your practitioner treats the patient only after a conventional medical/neurofunctional diagnosis has been made. The practitioner will then use acupuncture as a treatment along with other therapeutic approaches, as needed. The neurofunctional acupuncture practitioner applies treatment following a conventional (scientific) view by regarding the acupuncture as having certain local tissue effects as well as providing segmental analgesia, extra-segmental analgesia, as well as central regulatory effects on the nervous system. In contrast, a traditional Chinese acupuncturist makes a diagnosis in terms of complex theories regarding a disturbance in the body’s balance that needs to be corrected with needles. These imbalances will often be characterized by excess or deficiency with respect to the five elements: water, fire, earth, metal, and wood. Traditional Chinese acupuncturists subscribe to the theory that certain points in the body are characterized by each of the five elements.
Benefits of neurofunctional acupuncture:
- Pain relief
- Decreased muscle tension
- Improved function
- Accelerated recovery of injury.
Dr. Steen received his training in neurofunctional acupuncture from McMaster University Department of Health Sciences in 2015.