NIH Validates Acupunture
Monday, September 12th, 2016

NIH Review Validates Acupunture Therapy for Treatment of Common Pain Conditions

National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM)® Stresses Importance of Nondrug Approaches Such as Acupuncture for Addressing Chronic Pain


For Release: Monday, September 12, 2016

Contact: Sabrina Suarez, Echo Media Group
[email protected]
(714) 573-0899 ext. 227

Jacksonville, FL — The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health, has released research validating the effectiveness of acupuncture and other non-drug health therapies for pain. The National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM)®, which has long advocated for non-drug approaches to pain treatment, applauds the national agency’s attention to complementary therapies.

Published in the Mayo Clinic Proceedings journal, the piece, “Evidence-based Evaluation of Complementary Health Approaches for Pain Management in the United States,” compiled evidence on how complementary health therapies – including acupuncture, yoga, tai chi, massage therapy, and relaxation techniques – are effective in treating chronic pain.

Findings of this retrospective study was made available during September’s Pain Awareness Month, designated by the American Chronic Pain Association as a time to raise public awareness of issues regarding pain and the management of it. The NCCAOM has long advocated for non-drug approaches including acupuncture treatments for pain treatment.

“As addictions to, and deaths from prescription opioids such as oxycodone, hydrocodone, and methadone continue to rise, raising awareness on complementary and alternative pain therapies like acupuncture is more important than ever,” said Kory Ward-Cook, PhD, MT(ASCP), CAE, CEO of the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine. “The research from National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health brings greater attention to the use of acupuncture to treat and relieve chronic pain.”

Researchers studied outcomes from 50 years of controlled clinical trials published from 1966 through March 2016 conducted in the United States or ones U.S. participants, culling evidence of the efficacy, effectiveness, and safety of seven widely-used complementary approaches or groups of approaches: acupuncture; spinal manipulation or osteopathic manipulation; massage therapy; tai chi; yoga; relaxation techniques including meditation; and selected natural product supplements. The top five pain conditions commonly treated in primary care settings – back pain, osteoarthritis, neck pain, severe headaches and migraine, and fibromyalgia – were evaluated. Results of the study show that acupuncture in combination with yoga was the most effective therapy for back pain and acupuncture with tai chi is the most effective treatment for osteoarthritis pain of the knee.

Bill Reddy, NCCAOM-certified and licensed acupuncturist and Director of the Integrative Health Policy Consortium, asserts that consumers and medical professionals need to act now to change the over-prescribing of opioids in order to turn around the staggering fatality and addiction statistics plaguing our cities. “Opioids are dangerous, highly addictive and do not treat chronic pain – only mask it,” said Reddy. “To solve the opioid epidemic, we must apply the most powerful, innovative approaches to address the root cause of pain within the human body.”

To learn more about how acupuncture can be a solution regarding opioid abuse and addiction visit Video was produced by American Society of Acupuncturists.  To learn more about NCCAOM, or about acupuncture visit To find an NCCAOM board-certified practitioner in your area, click on Find a Practitioner at

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The National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine (NCCAOM®) is a non-profit 501(c)(6) organization established in 1982. NCCAOM is the only national organization that validates entry-level competency in the practice of acupuncture and Oriental medicine (AOM) through professional certification. NCCAOM certification or a passing score on the NCCAOM certification examinations are documentation of competency for licensure as an acupuncturist by 44 states plus the District of Columbia which represents 98% of the states that regulate acupuncture. All NCCAOM certification programs are currently accredited by the National Commission for Certification Agencies (NCCA). To learn more about the NCCAOM, or about acupuncture and national board certification visit To find an NCCAOM board-certified practitioner in your area, click on Find a Practitioner at