A recent study published in the journal Current Treatment Options In Neurology provided evidence that acupuncture is effective as a fist-line intervention for migraine headaches. Testing various complementary and alternative treatments, the authors concluded “Among complementary and alternative treatments, recent positive findings from randomized trials using acupuncture provide evidence of its potential as a first-line intervention.”
As an acupuncturist and doctor of Oriental medicine I can say that this is consistent with my clinical experience. Although known to be recalcitrant to many pharmacological and non-pharmacological treatments, I’ve seen migraines respond extremely well when treated with acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicinals. This is not only true for acute attacks. Most migraines can easily be cured once a root cause is identified. For example, although stress is considered the major contributor to migraine and tension-type headaches, stress triggers migraines in some individuals and not in others. The answer usually lies in our metabolisms. Chinese medicine is exceptional in re-balancing metabolic or biochemical incongruities and this makes it so effective in treating migraine headaches. Following this holistic approach of root cause analysis and treatment, improvements should usually be seen in 2-4 weeks.