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Acupuncture to help with salivation etc?

staceya's picture
staceya
Posts: 700
Joined: Jan 2010

Does anyone remember the conversation about acupuncture for increasing salivation, etc?
It seems that there was a reference made to an article?
Can any acupuncturist do this, or is special training required??

Thanks All!
stacey

MarineE5
Posts: 744
Joined: Dec 2005

Stacey,

I asked about this with my Radiation Oncologist and he recommended a Doctor that treated Head and Neck patients. The accupunture Doctor wanted to view a recent Pet Scan or Cat Scan to determine if I was a candidate for treatment. I met with him and he said that I had a 60-70% chance of getting some or all of my saliva back. He also told me that it would happen in 2-6 treatments and if it didn't, it might be a waste of money on my part to continue.

I looked into this because I know another Cancer Patient that lives in another state and he did the accupunture and got his saliva back after 2 treatments and only sips water during the night. So, I tried it and ended up doing 7 treatments. It didn't work for me, but it might be, because, I was nearly 5 years out of treatment verses my friend that was only 1 1/2 years out of treatment.

I remember reading on another board, one person posted that they finally got their saliva back after 6 years, so I still have hope for myself. Chewing gum seems to help during the day and talking with people.

My Best to You and Everyone Here

Scambuster's picture
Scambuster
Posts: 975
Joined: Nov 2009

Hi Stacey,

I am due to start a post on acupuncture and my experience. I lost pretty much all my saliva. Finished treatment Oct 2009. I had 2 Acupuncture treatments over Christmas but couldn't continue as my 'A' guy had a personal tragedy to deal with. I did restart about 5 weeks ago and have had 3 sessions from her. They can treat the actual condition and the Yin Yang balance of the body to help it heal. Many of the relevant points are in the ear and I think last week I have 4 needles in each ear. i also had them in my feet, outer shin and hands.

In case you haven't had Acupuncture before, it doesn't really hurt so don;t worry about that.

Now the result...

Happy to say I appear to have regained some saliva. While not a lot, I can now generate enough to wet my teeth and get some moisture in my mouth. I still require water or soup when eating but this is a big step forward for me and I hope things will continue to improve. I also take some Ginger candy which is also good for stimulating the salivary glands. While it does burn, I can deal with it. Raw ginger nibbled in small amounts is also a good things if you can manage it.

I also take a teaspoon of Echinacea mixed in a glass of water every morning which is also supposed to help the cause. Nasty tasting brew, but again, if it works, bring in the nasty taste !!

I was going to wait till I got a few more weeks in to this regime till reporting but though to ket you know how thing were gong to date.
I hope you can find a good acupuncturist and give it a go.

Cheers
Scambuster

staceya's picture
staceya
Posts: 700
Joined: Jan 2010

Thanks SB,

We have an acupuncturist at the North Valley Hospital where I work. It is a great hospital!
(Check us out at nvhosp.org)
I talked to the acupuncturist last week, she doesn't have any experience with the xerostomia protocols that one of the articles on the thread referred to. She was not sure if she needed any special training. I told her, that I would forward any info that I found.
Does your acupuncturist have any info that I could pass on?
Thanks
Stacey

Scambuster's picture
Scambuster
Posts: 975
Joined: Nov 2009

HI Stacey,

I will check and reply when I get feedback. I did note she had a bunch of new charts on her desk with very detailed diagrams of the ears and as said she hit all those points in the ears related to the salivary glands so ghat may be a start.

SB

staceya's picture
staceya
Posts: 700
Joined: Jan 2010

Thanks!

Scambuster's picture
Scambuster
Posts: 975
Joined: Nov 2009

Hi Stacey,

Just back from HK and another session with my good lady Acupuncturist. She has attacked the issue from 2 directions. Firstly, the Yin -Yang balance thing ..... dry-moist, hot-cold etc so basically rebalancing the body. She has also hit on specific points to treat Xerostomia.

What I gleaned today is that there are several approaches from different schools those being German, French USA and traditional Chinese Acupuncture. Apparently there is a slight variance in the location of the key points. The bulk of these for Xerostomia, as mentioned earlier, are in the ears. My lady has the text which shows all the above overlapped on the same chart. She used an electronic device to detect the key points. I had about 4 pins in each ear, some on the face, feet, stomach, head and hands.

I gather the different schools are all very close to each other. Apparently Acupuncture evolved in these separate countries, most likely because China was closed off for so long, and not until Nixon cracked open the door in 1974 did the different schools get to compare notes. I would think your acupuncturist should have the relevant text(s) to be able to find the appropriate chart to locate the right points.

Cheers
Scam

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