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Acupuncture, To Placebo or Not To Placebo?

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posted on Feb, 10 2015 @ 03:41 PM
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Howdy, ATS.

So, one of the vaccine threads touched on this briefly, but was too off topic in there imo & really warranted it's own thread anyways.

I love acupuncture, frankly. I've been doing it for years & my insurance covers it! I actually prefer Chinese Cupping to acupuncture, but I had never seen it so aggressively attacked like it was in the other thread for being "junk"/alternative medicine.

One poster had said "they wouldn't call it alternative medicine if it worked, they'd just call it medicine."
Personally, I find that to be a most ignorant remark.

But I was curious if anyone feels very strongly about it one way or another, & why.

Let's not try to change anyone's opinions, because we all know that won't happen. Feel free to link studies supporting either side. I'll read them, & continue to happily see my acupuncurist despite the results.




posted on Feb, 10 2015 @ 03:43 PM
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a reply to: Eunuchorn

If it works is it really a placebo or is it a methodology?



posted on Feb, 10 2015 @ 03:49 PM
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I've seen it work very well on dogs, so that would lead me to say that it's not a placebo.



posted on Feb, 10 2015 @ 03:51 PM
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originally posted by: onequestion
a reply to: Eunuchorn

If it works is it really a placebo or is it a methodology?


That is the real question, isn't it? If a placebo works but doesn't have any actual physical effect, it still worked! Thus, it's medicine.



posted on Feb, 10 2015 @ 03:55 PM
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a reply to: Benevolent Heretic

Placebo works on animals too.



posted on Feb, 10 2015 @ 03:56 PM
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a reply to: Eunuchorn

Non-specific subjective effects. Ones that can be objectively measured show no effect. Is the placebo beneficial? Sure, for trivial ailments, why not. But it's intellectually dishonest to sell a treatment under the guise of efficacy that has no measurable effect better than sugar pills.



posted on Feb, 10 2015 @ 03:58 PM
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a reply to: GetHyped

I think that depends on what you are getting acupuncture for.. Or rather what someone might convince themselves they need any medicine for, really.

I think a lot of people who spent years studying the nervous system & getting licenses & degrees might disagree with you.
edit on 10-2-2015 by Eunuchorn because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 10 2015 @ 04:02 PM
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originally posted by: GetHyped
Placebo works on animals too.


How could it? I'm talking about instantaneous effects. The first time.



Fully discussing placebo effects is a topic for another blog (or several other blogs). Regardless, whether or not placebo effects exist in human medicine, there is little evidence that they exist in animals. (1) In general, for a placebo response to occur, it would seen require that the patient being treated recognize that there is an intentional effort to treat. Animals would appear to lack the ability to comprehend such intentions (other than they may not like a particular intervention). As such, animals would not be able to participate in placebo-generating experiences. So, for example, one couldn’t rationally suggest to a dog that a particular therapy might help it get better, or that it was beneficial because it was “natural;” one presumably wouldn’t wax eloquent to a horse that a particular therapy might give it a window of hope for recovery. They just wouldn’t understand.

Still, there are many explanations for how a placebo-like effect might be explained in animals. Take conditioning. Conditioning theory proposes that bodily changes result following exposure to a stimulus that previously produced that change. This is perhaps the most intuitively acceptable explanation for any placebo effects in animals.
...
However, there’s no evidence whatsoever that animals can benefit from, or even experience, placebo effects.


Science-Based Medicine



posted on Feb, 10 2015 @ 04:05 PM
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a reply to: Eunuchorn


I know a lady that does reflexology. Her instructor told her to do reflexology in order to pay for the lessons he was teaching her. Lol sorry.
She's also is into iridology, that reading the iris to diagnose illness. Thats ones a big fraud.
I've got no experience or knowledge on acupuncture so I'm curious what the replies will be.

edit on 10-2-2015 by Hoosierdaddy71 because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 10 2015 @ 04:06 PM
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As far as I'm concerned if it works it works. I watched a very interesting documentary (linked below) about the placebo effect not long back which showed that placebos can create real chemical changes in the body in accordance with the expectation of the treatment even if it was a placebo...

www.dailymotion.com...
edit on 10-2-2015 by Scouse100 because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 10 2015 @ 04:12 PM
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I knew a kid in high school that bought a bag of oregano thinking it was something else and swore he was high as a kite his eyes were even bloodshot.

Placebo is a strong drug but still a gip.



posted on Feb, 10 2015 @ 04:19 PM
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a reply to: Benevolent Heretic


Your source goes on to explain placebo-like effects on animals.

More specific to the OP:


To take an “alternative” example, it has been shown that a single acupuncture treatment is as effective as petting a horse, when it comes to relief of signs of chronic airway disease; that is, there’s no demonstrable effect of acupuncture beyond simple handling.

edit on 10-2-2015 by GetHyped because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 10 2015 @ 04:21 PM
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originally posted by: Eunuchorn
a reply to: GetHyped
I think a lot of people who spent years studying the nervous system & getting licenses & degrees might disagree with you.


I'm sure they would but the evidence says otherwise. You can get a licence and degree in sugar pills (homeopathy), doesn't mean they're any less self-deluded in their claims for mechanism and efficacy.
edit on 10-2-2015 by GetHyped because: (no reason given)



posted on Feb, 10 2015 @ 04:35 PM
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a reply to: GetHyped

My argument with you wasn't whether or not acupuncture works, it's whether or not placebo works with animals. If you want to change to whether or not acupuncture works, I have no argument with you. It's a long-argued subject and I have no desire to try to convince you that it does work.



posted on Feb, 10 2015 @ 04:43 PM
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I don't think Acupuncture could be called medicine. Therapy yes, but medicine no.

As long as it's not being misrepresented to a customer I see no issue with its practice. It's only when unproven claims are made about it that it becomes a problem and enters the snake oil realm. If its suggested that a person should seek out acupuncture instead of real treatment for something serious, then it becomes a real problem and cri9minal.

Yes, I think any good it does is a placebo effect, but there is nothing wrong with that.

As far as animals, they key off of the attention they are getting, the tone of voice used around them and have a sense that they are being helped. I think with them a placebo effect is also in play. While they are receiving the therapy, they are also being talked to and calmed by people who care. I'd think just having the attention and their owner stroking them while comforting in a calm voice would be the same.



posted on Feb, 10 2015 @ 04:44 PM
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a reply to: Benevolent Heretic

I don't believe acupuncture works in humans, let alone animals.



posted on Feb, 10 2015 @ 04:48 PM
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a reply to: Eunuchorn
yes i believe acupuncture is real and does work , there was a case i read about quite some years ago about a doctor that removed his own appendix using the method .

i use acupressure to get rid of headaches and have done for years .



posted on Feb, 10 2015 @ 04:59 PM
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On a personal level, I have never had acupuncture but I have tried accupressure to relive headaches and nausea to no avail.

It seems to me that it is very difficult to prove either way whether it has a 'real' or placebo effect as it is practically impossible to conduct a double blind study due to the nature of the treatment.



posted on Feb, 10 2015 @ 05:04 PM
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a reply to: Scouse100

Sham acupuncture is one method (although not perfect, for obvious reasons). As it turns out, randomly poking people with needles has the same effect so if nothing else the entire explanatory mechanism behind it is bull#.



posted on Feb, 10 2015 @ 05:04 PM
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originally posted by: GetHyped
I don't believe acupuncture works in humans, let alone animals.


Understood.

I have tried it a couple times and it didn't have any effect on me, but I have seen it work on other people, and, as I said, on dogs. I think it depends on the person, their health and biology, and the practitioner.

My husband was treated with NAET (acupuncture for allergies) and it really seemed to work. I find it hard to believe a placebo would rid a person of allergies for a whole year.



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