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Acupuncture Specialist

J. Kimber Rotchford, M.D., M.P.H.

Addiction Medicine Physician located in Port Townsend, WA

Acupuncture is one of the oldest forms of medical therapy. J. Kimber Rotchford, MD, is a founding member and fellow of the American Academy of Medical Acupuncture and has studied with acupuncture masters in China and Europe. He offers acupuncture at his practice in Port Townsend, Washington. Call Dr. Rotchford or request a consultation online to learn how acupuncture can help you today.

Acupuncture Q & A

What is acupuncture?

Acupuncture is an ancient medical treatment that originated in China around 3000 BC. It involves placing thin, sterile needles into your body at specific points. In traditional Chinese medicine, acupuncture is believed to improve the flow of qi (life force) through the meridians of your body, improving your overall health and body function.

Modern explanations for the effects of acupuncture are many and range from "gateway theories", release of soothing compounds such as endorphins, dispersing inflammation and promote healing by running an electrical current through the tissues involved, etc. Dr. Rotchford, while a physician and expert in medical acupuncture continues to believe the results stem from many plausible western explanations and no one can entirely explain "how it works". We do know that electro-magnetic fields can influence cells even at the chromosome level.

Medicare and other third parties now cover acupuncture for low back pain, so even though thorough explanations may be lacking, the cost-effective outcomes have even convinced longstanding naysayers.

What are some of the many conditions likely to improve with acupuncture?

Dr. Rotchford often combines conventional Western and traditional Chinese models to create personalized treatment plans. While every patient has unique needs, Dr. Rotchford might recommend acupuncture to treat a wide range of conditions, including:

  • Fibromyalgia
  • Neuropathy
  • Joint pain
  • Arthritis
  • Tendinitis
  • Myofascial pain syndrome
  • Rotator cuff syndrome
  • Repetitive stress disorder
  • Sciatica
  • Bell’s palsy

Dr. Rotchford might also incorporate acupuncture into smoking cessation programs and mental health treatment.

What should I expect during an acupuncture treatment?

Acupuncture is often a relaxing treatment. Dr. Rotchford begins with a thorough consultation to develop his understanding of your condition and needs. While you relax on a comfortable treatment table or chair, he places the needles into your body. He might vibrate or heat the needles to deliver unique stimulation to your body.

You might feel a mild pinch when Dr. Rotchford inserts the needles, but acupuncture doesn't have to hurt. Many patients even drift off to sleep during their treatment. 

You don’t need to take any time off to recover but should allow yourself two hours to rest following your treatment. You should also avoid alcohol and pain-killers during those two hours. Dr. Rotchford might also ask you to keep a diary of your symptoms and the effects of each treatment.

You could see an improvement in your symptoms after just one acupuncture treatment, but most patients have a series of appointments for the best results.

Am I a good candidate for acupuncture?

Dr. Rotchford considers each patient’s needs individually before recommending any therapies. While acupuncture might not be right for everyone, Dr. Rotchford finds that around 80% of his patients experience reduced symptoms and an improvement in their overall health following acupuncture treatment.

If you want to find out if acupuncture is right for you, call Dr. Rotchford or request an appointment online today.