Overview on Veterinary Acupuncture

Document Type : Original Article


Faculty of Veterinary Medicine, Menofia University (Sadat Branch), Egypt


Acupuncture has been used in veterinary medicine by the Chinese for thousands of years. It has been performed on many species of animals but it is most commonly done on dogs, cats, horses, cattle and birds. Acupuncture is a method of producing analgesia or altering the function of a system of the body by inserting fine, flexible, thin needles into the skin at specific sites on the body (acupoints) along a series of
invisible lines or channels called meridians to balance the body’s vital energy, or “Qi or Chi“. There are 14 different meridians and through these meridians the Qi flows. The needles may be energized electrically, or warmed. According the Traditional Chinese Medicine theory, when the Qi can not properly flow from one acupuncture point to the next, a disease state occurs. Therefore, the goal of acupuncture therapy is to unblock the stagnation and allow the Qi to flow properly throughout the body. With a free flow of Qi, the body is in balance, and there is no disease. The exact mechanism of acupuncture is under active investigation. Until recently, it was thought that each needle acts as an external stimulus which encourages the release of chemicals, natural painkillers called endorphins that are believed to initiate self-healing within the body. These changes then help to improve circulation, relieve muscle spasms, stimulate nerves, relieve pain and stimulate the body’s immune system. However, magnetic resonance imaging researches reported that comparison of images of brains of subjects with and without acupuncture indicated that the acupuncture deactivates areas of the brain that control pain. The use of acupuncture in conjunction with drugs and/or surgery can greatly improve your animal’s chances for a rapid and complete recovery


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