Acupuncture Continuing Education

Acupuncture News and Research


NCCAOM updates

The NCCAOM (National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine) has changed the way diplomates report their acupuncture continuing education credits. The new system was implemented by the NCCAOM in November of 2018. The NCCAOM no longer accepts certificates by email. 

ST36 ST40

Acupuncture enhances weight loss and improves blood chemistry in patients with simple obesity. Researchers tested the efficacy of warm needle acupuncture by adding it to a weight loss dietary program. Patient outcomes improved significantly for patients receiving acupuncture plus dietary therapy when compared with patients receiving only dietary therapy. 

diabetic hypotension

Acupuncture combined with drug therapy outperforms drug monotherapy for the treatment of diabetic postural hypotension (also known as orthostatic hypotension). Shanxi Provincial Hospital of Traditional Chinese Medicine researchers conducted a controlled clinical trial and concluded that acupuncture plus metformin outperforms metformin monotherapy for diabetic patients suffering from postural hypotension. [1] 

acupuncture points

Acupuncture and herbs prove effective for the treatment of shingles. Researchers from three independent studies conclude that acupuncture and herbal medicine significantly relieve rashes and pain associated with the herpes zoster virus (shingles). Importantly, acupuncture and herbal medicine outperformed antiviral and anti-inflammatory medications, indicating that usual care protocols are suboptimal without inclusion of acupuncture and herbal medicine. 

low back points

Acupuncture is effective for patients with lumbar disc protrusions. CT scans confirm that acupuncture reduces disc protrusion size and increases healthy space in the spinal canal. Along with relief from nerve compression, investigators conclude that acupuncture improves range of motion and reduces pain for patients with lumbar disc protrusions. 


Acupuncture is effective for the treatment of influenza. Two independent investigations confirm acupuncture’s efficacy for fighting influenza. One laboratory investigation tested acupuncture as a monotherapy and determined that acupuncture lowers mortality rates, increases serum interferon levels, and improves the phagocytosis of viruses. Another investigation finds acupuncture effective for enhancing the clinical efficaciousness of anti-viral drugs. Let’s start with the integrative investigation and we’ll look at the acupuncture monotherapy next. 


Acupuncture demonstrates the ability to benefit patients with glaucoma. Modern research has determined that acupuncture benefits blood flow in the arteries of the brain and eyes. The results are confirmed with ocular blood flow (OBF) flowmeter readings for ocular pulse amplitude. Let’s take a look at the results, the acupuncture procedures that achieved the results, and a let’s start with a close look at glaucoma and the challenges it presents. 

gv14 du14 dazhui

Acupuncture reduces fevers for patients with the common cold. Tianjin University of Traditional Chinese Medicine researchers conducted a controlled clinical trial and determined that acupuncture reduces fevers and initiates a process wherein the normal body temperature is restored. The results were specific to a singular acupuncture point that was tested for efficacy. 


Acupuncture alleviates sciatica and MRIs reveal that acupuncture causes important pain relief related changes in brain functional connectivity. Affiliated Huashan Hospital of Fudan University researchers gathered objective and subjective data in a controlled clinical trial consisting of patients suffering from sciatica. Visual Analogue Scale (VAS) scores indicate that acupuncture produces significant decreases in both pain intensity levels and frequency of pain. Additionally, MRIs show that acupuncture restores pain-free connectivity related activity in the brain; acupuncture changed the functional state of the brain such that patients had greater resting states. 

neck treatment

Acupuncture and herbs alleviate cervical spondylosis, a disorder caused by disc degeneration in the neck that results in pain and range of motion impairment. Hubei University of Medicine Dongfeng Hospital researchers conclude that acupuncture combined with herbs successfully relieves pain and regulates excess sympathetic nervous system outflows for patients with cervical spondylosis. [1] Other improvements were also observed, including reductions in dizziness, palpitations, and neck dysfunction. 

ST25 acupoint

Acupuncture is effective for the alleviation of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). First Affiliated Hospital of Guangzhou Medical University researchers compared the efficaciousness of true acupuncture and sham acupuncture. The combination of true acupuncture plus standard aerobic training produced superior patient outcomes over patients receiving sham acupuncture plus identical standard aerobic training. The researchers conclude, “the addition of acupuncture to a standard aerobic training regimen improves the exercise tolerance in COPD patients and strengthens the effectiveness of aerobic training.” In addition, they note that “acupuncture combined with aerobic training effectively improves the pulmonary function and quality of life.” [1]

SP6 Sanyinjiao

Acupuncture restores brain activity and benefits chronic users of MDMA (3,4-methylenedioxymethamphetamine), a drug often referred to as ecstasy or molly. Using single-photon emission computed tomography (SPECT), Peking University researchers compared a healthy control group with a chronic MDMA user group. The research documents that acupuncture significantly improves cerebral perfusion and brain functional activity after brain damage due to chronic MDMA use. [1] 

BL17 Geshu

Acupuncture successfully regulates hormones and ovarian blood flow in women with polycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) related infertility. Maternal and Child Healthcare Hospital of Hengfeng County researchers compared the efficaciousness of acupuncture and drug therapy. The addition of acupuncture to drug therapy produced superior patient outcomes over patients receiving only drug monotherapy. [1] The combined integrative medicine protocol using acupuncture produced improvements in the regulation of estradiol (E2), follicle stimulating hormone (FSH), luteinizing hormone (LH), testosterone (T), and prolactin (PRL) levels. Also, ultrasound imaging reveals that acupuncture improves ovarian blood circulation. 

Eye Acupuncture

Acupuncture and herbs improve eyesight for patients with diabetic retinopathy. In a controlled clinical trial, Hubei Provincial Hospital of Traditional Chinese Medicine ophthalmology department researchers determined that herbal medicine monotherapy benefits vision. The addition of acupuncture to the treatment protocol significantly improved patient outcomes. 

abdominal acupuncture

Acupuncture restores brain connectivity and benefits patients with major depression disorder (MDD). Utilizing functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), researchers at the Guangzhou University of Chinese Medicine hospital document that acupuncture significantly increases the connectivity of the corticostriatum to other brain regions, an important brain circuit connection involved in rewards and motivation. In the same investigation, eight weeks of acupuncture treatments significantly decreased depression scores. Based on MRI results and clinical data, Guangzhou University researchers conclude that acupuncture regulates corticostriatal reward and motivation circuitry and improves patient outcomes for patients with depression. [1] 

osteoclast osteoblast

Acupuncture outperforms calcium supplementation for the treatment of postmenopausal osteoporosis. Researchers from Huazhong University of Science and Technology (Wuhan, Hubei province) conclude that acupuncture is effective for the alleviation of pain and the regulation of osteoporosis-related cytokines in postmenopausal osteoporosis patients. The study was approved and funded by Hubei Provincial Natural Science Foundation. The results were published in Chinese Acupuncture and Moxibustion. [1] 

live webinar

Acupuncture has been proven effective for the treatment of specific ailments, including musculoskeletal pain, addiction, and heart disease. In upcoming live webinars, research revealing the efficacy of classic acupuncture point prescriptions confirmed with modern research is presented. Topics focus on the treatment of specific disorders (e.g., hypertension, arrhythmias, migraines, knee pain, cocaine addiction, COPD, carpal tunnel syndrome) and their treatment protocols. In addition, the webinars provide licensed acupuncturists with NCCAOM PDA and state CEU credit.

Hegu (LI4)

Acupuncture is effective for the treatment of Bell’s palsy, a type of facial paralysis. Researchers at the Anhui Provincial Hospital of Traditional Chinese Medicine conducted an fMRI study analyzing the effects of acupuncture for the treatment of Bell’s palsy. Based on the data, the researchers conclude that acupuncture increases functional connectivity within the sensorimotor cortex and promotes brain reorganization in Bell’s palsy patients. [1] The researchers note that acupuncture directly restores neurosynaptic function and improves positive patient outcomes. 

LI11 Quchi

Acupuncture promotes the healing of bone fractures. Two independent investigations confirm that the addition of acupuncture to usual care protocols increases positive patient outcomes rates. Researchers find acupuncture effective for assisting in the restoration of mobility and reductions in both pain and inflammation. 

rheumatoid arthritis

Acupuncture is an effective treatment modality for the the alleviation of rheumatoid arthritis. Researchers conclude that acupuncture alone or in combination with additional treatment modalities alleviates rheumatoid arthritis, restores bodily functions, and improves quality of life. [1] In a meta-analysis, the researchers note that acupuncture exerts its effective actions through several biological mechanisms. The acupuncture research indicates that acupuncture produces anti-inflammatory, antioxidative, and immune system regulatory actions.