Ian Thomas B.Vet.Med., Cert V.A., MRCVS, hosts a pain management clinic, offering acupuncture and analgesic solutions on a first opinion and referral basis.
Acupuncture has been used for millennia to benefit people and animals; however it was not until the 1960s that the western world looked to integrate and harness its effects within our modern understanding of medicine.
Although it has many applications in veterinary medicine, acupuncture is probably most useful in the treatment of chronic, painful conditions such as osteoarthritis. WSAVA Guidelines for Recognition, Assessment and Treatment of Pain (2014) recommend including acupuncture in an analgesic regime as soon as possible.
Needle placement is well tolerated by the majority of patients, but the micro trauma caused by insertion is registered by the brain. This causes the release of natural painkillers called endorphins; while the release of other substances causes a damping down of signals from chronic sources of pain like joint disease.
Acupuncture has no real side effects, is very safe and can be used in conjunction with all other treatment modalities to aid mobility.