We sometimes hear claims that it can do this. However, there is certainly no hard evidence that it can, and I think it is safer to regard it as merely a symptomatic treatment. This may seem a rather negative and unexciting conclusion, but we should remember that the same is true of much conventional treatment, for example the use of NSAIDs to treat arthritis.
Introducing acupuncture to new patients
It is important to make sure that new patients know what to expect and are quite willing to have the treatment. They don’t have to believe it works, however; scepticism doesn’t matter. If a patient seems at all reluctant to have the treatment it is best to ask him or her to think it over. In general, choosing the right patient to treat is as important as choosing the right points to needle, sometimes more so.