For decades now, patients suffering from fibromyalgia were often just told by the medical profession that the symptoms they are feeling were just imaginary and it is all just in their head. They were prescribed anti-depressants and anti-seizure medications or told to take rest or do exercise. These treatments were ineffective and left patients frustrated. Research has now confirmed fibromyalgia is actually in the blood and have found that the main source of pain stems from the excess blood vessels in the hand.
They discovered that fibromyalgia sufferers had an excessive amount of a specialized nerve fiber called arteriole-venule shunts.
Neuroscientist Dr. Frank Rice said that these nerve endings contribute to the sensation of pain and that the irregular blood flow leads to pain and fatigue from a buildup of lactic acid and low levels of inflammation.
Some patients are angry that they for decades they have been prescribed SSRI’s (Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors) and feel that they were just experimented on.
Chinese medicine has used a meridian called the chong in the treatment of fibromyalgia. The Chinese name chong is difficult to translate but can be regarded as a system that includes the blood vessels, the blood in the vessels and the nutrients aka hormones in the blood whilst at the same time involving the spleen that makes the blood, the heart that propels the blood and the liver that stores the blood.
Another system of meridians in Chinese medicine makes use of the luo meridians which can be translated as connecting meridians and these meridians can store pathogens or toxins in them. Some of them end at the thick part of the palm of the hand near the thumb and the acupuncture points in the area are actually pricked with an acupuncture needle to stimulate some drops of blood to come out which then release the toxin. This treatment has been successfully used in the treatment of pain associated with fibromyalgia.
So it appears that acupuncturists knew all along that to influence the blood was a key to treating fibromyalgia. Though some scientists would still believe that if acupuncture had actually helped a fibromyalgia patient it was because it was in the patient’s head and they believed it would help.