The Annals of Cardiology No.38 | Acupuncture for Your Heart
Do you sometimes find yourself in a tug-of-war with your doctor over his prescription medications and your researched alternative remedies? Does he not understand why you want to do things naturally? When I look at medication lists these days, it’s not unusual for a patient’s over-the-counter supplements to outnumber prescription pills – whether you approve or not, here’s a sampling of what some take for their heart: guggul, hawthorn, barberry, black cohosh, butcher’s broom, capsicum, ginseng, valerian root – the list goes on. These extracts (along with other disciplines as mainstream as chiropractic and as out-there as trans-telephonic DNA healing) fall under the category of complementary and alternative medicines which many traditional doctors view with distrust, disapproval, or disdain. I should add envy to the list – you can bet traditional medicine keeps an eye on these disciplines and how much healthcare money goes their way. To give you an idea, Americans spend about 34 billion dollars per year on complementary and alternative therapies.
Over time, traditional medicine has adopted some alternative therapies for which scientific proof of benefit exists. In some instances, it seems a rather arrogant take-over of ancient practices, re-branded as trendy 21st century medicinal subgenres. Regardless, when a study involving an alternative therapy appears in one of my conventional medical journals, it gets my attention. And that’s what happened this summer when The Journal of the American Medical Association published a Chinese study using acupuncture to treat angina.
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