Acupuncture Fibromyalgia and Depression

Acupuncture, FMS, Depression | Scottsdale Psychiatrist

Depression and Fibromyalgia Treated with Acupuncture


Often depression and anxiety will be accompanied by transient bodily pain. Acupuncture is becoming an accepted form of treatment for pain management, fibromyalgia, and somatization disorder within western medicine. As a psychiatrist in Scottsdale, I often treat people for fibromyalgia and other disorders that bring about bodily pain. Many medical doctors are including acupuncture as a primary technique of pain management rather than an alternative therapy. The term “medical acupuncture” is coming into vogue; in fact many medical schools discuss the benefits of acupuncture as was the case with my medical school training at the University of Illinois. These disorders are often treated with anti-depressants such as the SNRIs or serotonin norepinephrine reuptake inhibitors. These antidepressants have been able to increase the norepinephrine in the body which is the neurotransmitter or endorphin that controls pain. Depression and somatization disorder are closely associated with fibromyalgia or share the same symptoms. It appears that the SNRIs, opiates and acupuncture seem to accomplish the same end result in triggering the body to increase the amount of endorphins in the system. Endorphins are endogenous opioid peptides that function as neurotransmitters. They are produced by the pituitary gland and the hypothalamus during exercise, excitement, pain, and other activities. They have similar effects as opiates in their abilities to kill pain.

Acupuncture Fibromyalgia and Depression is Becoming More and More Accepted


It wasn’t until 1996 that the FDA approved acupuncture medicine as a medical device. The National Institutes of Health formally recognized acupuncture as part of mainstream medicine in 1997. In 1999, clinical researchers reported that inserting acupuncture needles into specific body points triggers the production of endorphins. In another study, higher levels of endorphins were found in cerebrospinal after patients underwent acupuncture.

Numerous studies have shown that acupuncture is effective for treating fibromyalgia FMS. A study published in the June edition of the Mayo Clinic Proceedings showed acupuncture treatments relieved fatigue and anxiety in fibromyalgia patients for up to 7 months after the treatment. Research released in 2008 revealed that after 20 acupuncture treatments, patients with fibromyalgia experienced significant improvements in pain and quality of life that continued for 3 months after treatment ceased, with a slow decline in symptoms over the ensuing 2 years.

If you are suffering from Fibromyalgia FMS or any other pain disorder, you may wish to ask your neurologist or psychiatrist about acupuncture. We know that often many people respond to different therapies and medical acupuncture might be the treatment for you. Dr. Russell Berg, a Phoenix Chiropractor has had some excellent results with acupuncture; you may wish to visit his site and watch a short video.