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CTV News: Acupuncture may be solution for chronic pain January 15, 2008, interview on Dr. Trinh

Dr. Trinh, Chair of Medical Acupuncture Program EBA, was interviewed by Canadian Press on acupuncture effectiveness, training and courses

Quotes of Dr. Trinh’s comments and opinions taken from CTV.ca and Canadian Press

Dr. Kien Trinh, a Hamilton sports medicine specialist, uses acupuncture as one treatment option for patients who come to him seeking relief from various types of musculoskeletal pain.

“A lot of the athletes that come, especially the swimmers or baseball players, because they use their shoulders repetitively, they usually have a rotator cuff type of tendonitis,” says Trinh, elective co-ordinator for acupuncture in sports medicine for medical students at McMaster University.

“We give them therapy, medication, and also we can use acupuncture to improve their range of motion and also decrease their pain.”

Trinh says western medical doctors are far more accepting of acupuncture than they once were because they have seen clinical research reviews showing its benefits are scientifically sound.

“I would say we have very few patients who just look up in the Yellow Pages and call us to say ‘I want to give acupuncture a try.’ It’s usually the ones who are sent to us have been having problems for quite a long time and tried conventional treatments,” and their doctors refer them for acupuncture.

But Trinh advises people to take care in choosing an acupuncturist by making sure the practitioner has been fully trained and certified. As well, note should be taken about the types of conditions a practitioner says acupuncture can successfully treat.

“We know that good evidence (exists) to support it in terms of musculoskeletal problems,” he says. “But a lot of people make claims about treating heart disease, blood pressure and so on, so they have to be careful of people making these claims.”

“If someone tells you they have a treatment that works for every single problem, you better think twice.”

Please visit the CTV news and the Canadian Press for full coverage of the story