The Benefits of Acupuncture for Urinary Functions
Posted on May 25 2012 at 10:03:12 AM in Health
Incontinence continues to be a growing concern for women, especially since modern therapies are not without side effects, medical industry journals say. A Consumer Reports vaginal mesh article blasting on manufacturers and the FDA goes to show that even constantly updated medical interventions such as device implantations are not always safe.
Troubled and hopeless, women with intense level of incontinence often risk their future safety just so they would be relieved of these discomforts. Ancient therapies such as herbal medicine and acupunctures are usual fallbacks especially for people who believe that the functions of all body parts are controlled by major energy pathways. Disruptions on these major areas may diminish the body’s auto-healing properties.
Acupuncture therapy helps lessen the symptoms of bladder overactivity by acting on the ligaments, muscles, and nerves connected with the activities of the bladder. It slows down unnecessary muscle contractions of the bladder or urethral sphincters, and at the same time increases blood flow to the bladder walls.
A study of 74 randomly selected women who presented symptoms of overactive bladder (OAB) and incontinence proved that those who received acupuncture treatment showed improvement after a 4-week therapy sessions. The rest of the group who were given acupuncture treatments for relaxation purposes showed little improvement in their incontinence symptoms. Based on these results, lead researcher Dr. Sandra Emmons concluded that the use of acupuncture treatment as an adjunct to medication and behavioral strategies for the relief of OAB and incontinence symptoms may be efficient enough if properly administered.
Moreover, its side effects are limited to discolorations of the insertion sites and over-relaxation of the rest of the parts of the body. These are minor complications that will slowly fade in time. In other words, acupuncture therapy is generally safe. In fact, only 10 cases of injuries related to this treatment have ever been recorded. Accidental deep punctures to major internal organs like the lungs, liver, and kidneys are possible, but rare.
Other benefits of acupuncture include alleviation of pain and stomach problems. Most patients who are unresponsive to pain meds usually get relief from this therapy.
Because acupuncture promotes blood circulation and reconditions the bladder to contract effectively, accidental leaks may be minimized. However, it is not yet known if its effects are permanent and if complications may arise in cases of prolonged treatment. In the meantime, women are easily drawn to doctor-recommended treatments for bladder hyperactivity and incontinence. This includes surgical sling use that is still barraged with controversies and transvaginal mesh lawsuit even until today.