Acupuncture vs Dry Needling

What is the difference between acupuncture and dry needling?

Have you ever wondered what the hype was about with acupuncture? Or with dry needling? Dr. Krause explains when each is used and how they are different!

Acupuncture[note 1] is a form of alternative medicine[2] in which thin needles are inserted into the body.[3] It is a key component of traditional Chinese medicine (TCM). TCM theory and practice are not based upon scientific knowledge,[4] and acupuncture is a pseudoscience.[5][6] There are a diverse range of acupuncture theories based on different philosophies,[7] and techniques vary depending on the country.[8] The method used in TCM is likely the most widespread in the US.[2] It is most often used for pain relief,[9][10] though it is also used for a wide range of other conditions. Acupuncture is generally used only in combination with other forms of treatment.[11]

Dry needling, also known as myofascial trigger point dry needling,[1][2][3][4] is the use of either solid filiform needles (also referred to as acupuncture needles) or hollow-core hypodermic needles for therapy of muscle pain, including pain related to myofascial pain syndrome. Dry needling is sometimes also known as intramuscular stimulation (IMS). Acupuncture is a broad category of needling practices with solid filiform needles. Modern acupuncture notably includes both traditional and Western medical acupuncture; dry needling is arguably one subcategory of western medical acupuncture.[1]

 

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