Does your acupuncture technique hurt?
No. My technique is gentler, subtler
and less painful than the Chinese techniques which most acupuncturists
in North America use. I use thinner needles and employ shallower
insertions than Chinese acupuncture. This means that discomfort
is rarely experienced during treatment and if there is discomfort,
it is very minimal.
Does your shiatsu technique hurt?
No. My technique is not aggressive at
all. Shiatsu treatments are generally relaxing as a deep but
gentle pressure is normally used. The intensity of pressure
applied is adjusted according to your condition in order to
minimize discomfort. Certain areas of your body, however,
may feel tender during or following the treatment.
Does your moxibustion technique hurt?
A bit. If I use indirect moxibustion,
it does not hurt at all. You will only feel a comfortable
heat. With direct moxibustion, you'll feel an intense, localized
heat for a second or two and you might get a blister with
a minor burn (less than 2mm in diameter). Having said that,
direct moxibustion is much more effective than indirect because
of the longer lasting acupuncture point stimulation due to
blistering. Blistering elicits the body's healing process
and with direct moxibustion, the body's self-healing power
is focused on a selected acupuncture point (and its associated
area) for an extended period of time.
Can I get AIDS or hepatitis from your needles?
No. I only use disposable insertion needles.
Each needle comes packaged and pre-sterilized with ethylene
oxide gas. New needles are used with each visit and are disposed
of immediately following each treatment into a biohazard-marked
container. I follow universal precautions to protect my patients
and myself. Acupuncture has no adverse effects or risks.
Is acupuncture's effectiveness just a placebo
No. Acupuncture has been widely used
to treat a variety of domestic animals. In Japan, it is regularly
used with success to treat racehorses. These animals are immune
to the placebo effect and to the psychosomatic element of
therapy. This means that it is the insertion of needles into
specific points, itself, that works. Any form of medicine
has a placebo component, including modern medicine. The placebo
effect is just a small part of acupuncture's effectiveness.
While a positive attitude may enhance it, a negative attitude
will not block the effects of acupuncture.
Can I use acupuncture for health maintenance?
Yes. The best use of acupuncture is for
the maintenance of health. Oriental medicine says that the
best doctor cures illness before it occurs, which means that
prevention is the most important thing in medicine. A principle
in Oriental medicine is that changes in ki (Qi) or energy,
precede physical change. This means that acupuncture can act
as preventive medicine, correcting the balance of energy flow
before a serious illness occurs. It is accepted that automobiles
need regular maintenance to keep them running reliably yet
we tend to ignore our own body's call for attention. This
is very strange when you consider how easily a worn-out or
broken part on a car can be replaced compared to a dysfunctional
part of one's body. We must start to value ourselves more
than our automobiles and work towards the maintenance of health
and the prevention of disease.
Can I lose weight through your treatments?
It is almost impossible to lose significant
amounts of weight through acupuncture or shiatsu treatments
alone. Appropriate diet and exercise modifications must also
be made. That being said, acupuncture and shiatsu strengthens
the digestive system and helps to increase the metabolism
-- two benefits which are very important for healthy weight
loss and weight maintenance. Regular treatment also releases
joint and muscle tension and corrects structural imbalances.
This allows you to continue weight-loss activities without
pain or injury.
Patients who come regularly for treatment seem to be able
to maintain their body weight without effort. There may be
a redistribution of body fat and muscle tone as the normalizing
effects of acupuncture and shiatsu work in the body and this
might be perceived as weight loss. There may also actually
be a slight loss of weight over time with regular treatment.
Even if weight loss is not a concern for you, proper diet
and exercise is important to health and will greatly increase
the health maintenance benefits of regular acupuncture and
Will acupuncture help with my cigarette or
Acupuncture may change your taste for
cigarettes and you may start to dislike smoking but the final
steps in quitting are dependent on your will. Your own will
is most important and acupuncture will help support it. Similarly,
acupuncture does not cure drug addiction but it does alleviate
withdrawal symptoms so that mental and physical stability
are achieved as soon as possible. For more information, please
contact the National Acupuncture Detox Association (NADA)
at NADAclear@aol.com or (503) 222-1362. I do not take patients
whose primary goal is to quit smoking or break a drug addiction.
Auricular (Ear) Points Resemble a Fetus In-utero
Can acupuncture cure cancer?
No. Acupuncture should not be regarded
as a cure for cancer.
I have heard people say that acupuncture cured their cancer.
While I am happy for them and respect their perspective, I
am not sure that it was acupuncture alone that brought such
healing. Was a misdiagnosis involved or did somehow the body
and mind fight back without the help of modern medicine? Oriental
medicine believes that if a physical change has already occurred,
it can be reversed by adjusting the flow of Ki (Qi). This
means that there is always a way of treating any type of illness
by correcting imbalance and strengthening the body's self-healing
power. The transformative power of the body on the mind and
vice versa is very profound and mysterious.
Acupuncture and shiatsu are great for relieving some uncomfortable
symptoms and reducing some pain of serious illness. They can
also play an important role in recovery and rehabilitation
by restoring balance of structure and function in the body.
Above all, acupuncture and shiatsu are excellent preventive
medicine for they can correct energy flow before serious illness
I have had acupuncture before. Is it all
No. My techniques are Japanese and most
acupuncturists in North America use Chinese acupuncture techniques.
All acupuncture is different. There are variations in approach
even within Japanese acupuncture techniques. If you have tried
acupuncture before and a) it didn't achieve the results you
were hoping for or b) you didn't like it, I would still recommend
that you try my treatment. Likewise, if my treatment doesn't
work for you, it doesn't mean that another acupuncturist's
approach won't be successful. If you have had many treatments
with several different acupuncturists and your problem continues,
you may want to try a different treatment modality. It would
also be prudent to consult a physician (preferably a specialist)
to make sure there is no serious illness behind your complaint.
What kind of clientele do you have?
70% of my clients are English speakers.
70% of my clients are female.
The largest age group of my clients is the 30 to 40 years of age category.
My eldest client has been a 99 year old Japanese woman.
The most common complaints that I treat are (in order of frequency):
1) back pain; 2) neck and shoulder pain; 3) other joint problems; 4) menstrual disorders and 5) emotional disorders.
How do you select acupuncture points?
The accurate selection of acupuncture
points requires that knowledge of the general anatomical location
of points be matched by experience and sensitivity in the
fingertips. Mr. Sorei Yanagia, the most renowned acupuncturist
in modern Japan and the first principal of my Acupuncture
College wrote in his book The Complete Book of Acupuncture
and Moxibustion Medicine, "When performing acupuncture
and moxibustion for disease prevention and treatment, one
must, at any cost, be very strict in selecting acupoints...Is
the purpose of acupuncture merely for stimulation? No, we
do not think this way. While stimulation of the living body
makes one metal needle or one pinch of moxa effective, we
believe that it is the accurate selection of acupuncture points
that contribute most to their effectiveness."
There are three different types of acupuncture points I choose
for treatment. The first types are local points chosen for
their effectiveness in providing symptomatic relief. To locate
their exact position, I usually palpate for tension, pressure
pain, heat and/or indurations. The second types are distant
points chosen to address energetic and structural imbalances
in the patient. To locate these points, I usually feel for
a subtle depression or indentation in the tissues. The third
types are special effect points: standard acupuncture points
for specific problems and for strengthening the body's self-healing
power. They may or may not be easily palpable, but their effectiveness
has been empirically proven throughout history.
|This figure is a copy of one designed
by the physician Wang Weiyi in 1027 AD to train doctors
in the practice of acupuncture. The figure is hollow and
has 354 holes to represent acupunture points. When students
took their exams, the figure was covered with wax and
filled with water. A student had to insert a needle into
a precisely defined acupuncture point. If they were successful,
water would flow out.
Should I come before or after a sporting
Professional athletes receive treatment
both before and after their activity. Treatment techniques
vary depending on the relative timing of the event. If you
can come only once, I'd recommend that you come before your
sporting event. There is truth to the expression, "an
ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure". You can
avoid or lessen the chance of injury and you will be in better
condition to achieve a better performance. Because treatment
techniques and intentions are different depending on the timing
of your event, it is important that you tell me when it is
Where did you train?
I graduated from
Toyoshinkyu College of Oriental Medicine in Tokyo, Japan in
1988. My school is the most renowned school in Japan for teaching
traditional acupuncture techniques. Most of my instructors
had 30 to 50 years of clinical experience. This three-year,
2800-hour comprehensive program gave me a solid grounding
in Western health sciences and Oriental medicine theory as
well as strictly supervised training. While studying full
time, I gained further practical experience in soft tissue
disorders by working at a sports clinic in Tokyo, 30 hours
a week for two years.
I take continuing education courses regularly to improve my
technique and I share clinical experience with my colleagues
on a daily basis.
Above all, the greatest wealth of information, experience
and wisdom comes from the people I treat daily. This offers
me the most valuable learning process of all.
(Maitreya, the Future Buddha)
Do I have to make an appointment ahead of
Yes. Our clinic is by appointment only.
Treatment times are usually filled one week in advance, so
you are best to book ahead for a time that suits your schedule.
Occasionally there are cancellations and you may get in with
shorter notice if you are flexible. Appointments are made
by telephone only. Our phone number is (604) 737-1016.