Atlanta Acupuncture Center

275 Carpenter Drive, suite 200, Atlanta, GA. 30328

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Fibromyalgia & TCM


Li Hua, L. Ac. TCMD


If stress cannot be released, or released not properly, it may influence the physical body. Some people think fibromyalgia is a kind of civilization problem that comes from stress. It can occur in people of all ages, from teenagers to seniors, although it is more likely to occur, as you get older. Women get it more often than men.


When it begins, a person might think it is an injured muscle, and the peripheral nerve may be too sensitive so that a tiny stimulation can turn into an aching reaction. Or they might mistake it for an infection. But it is still not clear what causes it. Other theories relate it with the disorder of the nerves or endocrine systems, or with mental illness because the syndrome of fibromyalgia is similar to depression and tiny biochemical abnormalities in brain tests. So we are still not clear about the etiology of fibromyalgia. Its main syndrome is muscle aching found at eighteen sensitive points. Patients feel worse during bad weather or after vigorous activity. Because there are many different symptoms, people may see different types of doctors. For example, people with back pain and knee pain usually select doctors who specialize in rheumatism, orthopedics or neurosurgery; people with insomnia and headache usually see a psychiatrist or psychologist; people with palpitations and stuffy chest usually visit a cardiologist; people with difficulty swallowing usually go to an ear/nose/throat specialist; people with a low appetite and irregular bowel movements usually see another sort of specialist; people with menstruation pain usually visit a gynecologist. It is essential for traditional medical doctors to work as a team to help fibromyalgia patients out of their suffering.


Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) treats not only the symptom of the problem, but also treats the problem from its cause and treats the whole body system. TCM believes the heart is the house of spirit and mind. The activities of spirit and mind rely on the energy of the heart and other organs. Spirit and mind also control physical body movement. Because fibromyalgia shows the symptoms mainly in nerves and muscles, it can be effectively treated by acupuncture or Tui Na (Chinese medical massage). I suggest that my patients eat differently in different seasons. I teach them to think or deal with things in old Chinese philosophy. In the clinic, yin exercise has a better result, such as Tai Chi Qi Gong, yoga, moving meditation, swimming in a hot spring pool, or dry swimming in hot sand.