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Acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) therapeutic techniques are effective treatments for lower back pain due to lumbar disc herniations. A new randomized, controlled clinical trial demonstrates that acupuncture and TCM therapy reduces back pain and restores motor functionality for patients with herniated lumbar discs. A sample size of 408 patients receiving a traditional combination of TCM therapies were examined in comparison to a control group receiving health education, pain medications and physical therapy. The acupuncture-TCM group showed significantly greater improvement than that of the control group.

Lower back acupuncture for lumbar disc herniations relieves pain. Low Back AcupunctureThe patients in the TCM group received electro-acupuncture, a Chinese herbal medicine injection of Dan Shen (Salvia miltiorrhiza) and an external herbal medicated plaster during the acute stage. During the subacute stage, patients received Tuina massage, Chinese herbal medicine hot compresses and external herbal medicated plasters. During the chronic stage, patients received TCM functional exercises and external herbal medicated plasters.

The electro-acupuncture was applied to acupuncture points UB25 (Dachangshu) and Baihuanshu (UB30). De qi sensation was achieved followed by a continuous wave pulse of 0.6ms at 20Hz. The electro-acupuncture was applied once per day for 30 minutes. The chief ingredients in the herbal plasters were Zi Jing Pi, Huang Jing Zi, Da Huang, Chuan Xiong, Tian Nan Xing and Ma Qian Zi. The TCM function of the plasters are to enhance blood circulation, resolve blood stasis, eliminate swelling and to alleviate pain. The herbal medicated plasters were applied to the areas of intense pain. The herbal medicine injections functioned to enhance blood circulation and to resolve blood stasis.

The Chinese herbal medicine hot compresses were composed of Cang Zhu, Qin Jiao, Sang Zhi, Mu Gua, Hong Hua, Chuan Xiong, Hai Feng Teng and Lei Gong Teng. The herbs were placed in a gauze bag, decocted for 20 minutes, allowed to reduce in temperature slightly and were then applied to the lower back for 30-40 minutes at a rate of once per day. The TCM functional exercise was the Flying Swallow style (Fei Yan Shi). Here, the patient rests in the prone position, extends the hand backwards and lifts the chest and lower limbs off the bed using the abdomen as the pivot. Intervals of this exercise plus relaxation were conducted once a day with 4-5 repetitions. The function of the exercise program is to strengthen the lower back muscles and increase spinal stability. The intention is to prevent repeated relapses of the condition. The Tuina massage employed the Anrou (pressing & kneading), Tanbo (plucking) and Gun (rolling) techniques once per day.

The control group received health education including instructions as to avoid activities that exacerbate or aggravate the condition. Patients were also instructed to rest and received pain medications and physical therapy. The acupuncture-TCM group was compared with the control group. The researchers concluded, “This randomized controlled clinical trial provides reliable evidence regarding the effectiveness of integrative TCM conservative treatment for patients with low back pain due to lumbar disc herniation.”

Yuan, Wei An, Shi Rong Huang, Kai Guo, Wu Quan Sun, Xiao Bing Xi, Ming Cai Zhang, Ling Jun Kong, Hua LU, Hong Sheng Zhan, and Ying Wu. "Integrative TCM Conservative Therapy for Low Back Pain due to Lumbar Disc Herniation: A Randomized Controlled Clinical Trial."

Acupuncture CEUs Online

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Acupuncture CEU & PDA Online Courses FAQs

Below are a few of the most frequent questions we field. You can also find more on our SUPPORT page. If you still haven’t found your answer, please feel free to contact us anytime. We would love to hear from you.

Are acupuncture CEUs & NCCAOM PDAs valid in my state or province?

HealthCMi CEUs are valid in every state in the USA, including Washington DC and other regions such as Puerto Rico. Most states use the NCCAOM acupuncture CEU/PDA certification that comes with every HealthCMi course.

All courses are valid for specialty certifications from the California Acupuncture Board and the Texas State Board of Acupuncture Examiners. HealthCMi courses are approved for Florida Board of Acupuncture CEs for acupuncture license renewal credit along with other specialty certifications such as the State of Illinois (IDFPR) acupuncture CE sponsor program. If you don’t see your state listed (North Carolina, New York, Washington, Oregon, Massachusetts, Utah, etc.), that is because the rest of the USA is covered by the NCCAOM certification that comes with every HealthCMi course. We even have courses approved through the specialty programs of the State of Nevada Board of Oriental Medicine, ABORM, IVAS, and more. An added bonus, all courses are California Board of Registered Nursing approved, so nurses can get acupuncture CEUs and nursing continuing education credit simultaneously.

In addition, HealthCMi acupuncture CEUs are valid throughout New Zealand, Canada (including CTCMA, BC and CAAA), and Australia for acupuncture continuing education credit.

Check our interactive map to learn more about your CEU credits >

Do acupuncture webinars count as live CEUs?

Yes. In many states that require in-person attendance, live acupuncture webinars count for face-to-face CEU credit. For example, the California Acupuncture Board allows 25 CEUs via distance learning and the other 25 must be live (in a classroom or a live webinar online). New Jersey acupuncturists also benefit from live webinars for in-class requirement fulfillment. In the USA, no quiz is required for live webinars and for CTCMA acupuncturists in British Columbia (Canada), the survey fulfills the 2-way requirement and no quiz is required.

For live webinars, do I need to take a quiz?

Quizzes are not required for live webinars, only for anytime distance learning courses. You may see a quiz button on the learning management system control panel; however, if you try to take a quiz, the system will tell you that it is unnecessary. Make sure to click the download button to get the link to the live webinar. We will also send you a link via email the day before the event.

How do I purchase Acupuncture CEU courses online?

Click on Acupuncture CEUs in the top menu to view all course listings and follow the links. Simply choose the courses you like, add to cart, and get CEU credit from our online learning system.

HealthCMi courses are NCCAOM Diplomate PDA (applies to most States), California CEU, Florida CE, Texas CAE, CTCMA (BC, Canada), CAAA, Illinois, and State of Nevada Board of Oriental Medicine approved for continuing education credit hours and more. Massachusetts licensed acupuncturist can obtain their herbal medicine hours or acupuncture category required hours. All 50 states and territories in the USA are approved for acupuncture CEU credit for HealthCMi courses. Our acupuncture CEUs are also valid throughout Canada, Australia, New Zealand, and much more.

Check listings for ABORM approved courses. All courses for acupuncturists are also California Board of Registered Nursing approved.

How long do I have to take the Acupuncture CEU courses online?

There is no time limit for course completion of your Acupuncture CEU or PDA courses.

How many times can I retake Acupuncture CEU course quizzes?

You make re-take quizzes until a passing grade is achieved. A certificate of completion is automatically generated, and you may print it. There is no extra charge to re-take quizzes.