What to Expect
Can Chinese Medicine help my condition?

Hundreds of research studies have demonstrated acupuncture to be very effective for a wide variety of conditions. Just about any condition can be improved with Chinese medicine, and many can be cured. The goal of Chinese medicine is to shift disease process and bring the body back into balance so that organ systems and defense systems can function normally. Suzanne has successfully treated patients with complaints that include complications from everyday stress and tension to serious diseases and chronic conditions. The following is a general list of ailments that are often treated with Chinese medicine. If you have a specific question, please feel free to email Suzanne and ask. If she feels she cannot help you, she will happily assist you in finding a practitioner or doctor who can.

  • Women’s Health: Menstrual irregularities, infertility, infections, pregnancy and post-partum, menopause, PMS.
  • Digestive: IBS, inflammatory bowel diseases, gastritis, GERD, gallbladder conditions.
  • Respiratory: Asthma, allergies, bronchitis, cold and flu, chronic respiratory disease.
  • Cardiovascular: Arrhythmias, congestive heart failure, angina, hypertension.
  • Dermatology: Eczema, psoriasis, urticarial, fungal infections.
  • Pain Conditions: Sprains, strains, fractures, chronic pain conditions, tension and repetitive stress conditions, arthritis, osteoporosis, headaches.
  • Mental/Emotional: Depression, anxiety, panic attacks, OCD, stress, insomnia.
  • Other: Dizziness, tinnitus, eye disorders, anemia; urinary, prostate, and sexual dysfunction.
What is the difference between acupuncture and Chinese medicine?

Chinese Medicine is a complete system of medicine with its own forms of diagnosis, treatment, prognosis, and therapies. Acupuncture is just one modality in this system. In addition to acupuncture, Chinese Medicine includes herbal medicine, dietary therapy, Tui-na massage, exercise and lifestyle counseling. In New York, as in most states, the profession is designated as “Licensed Acupuncturist,” but most practitioners engage a combination of these modalities to heal and prevent illness and suffering.

Does acupuncture hurt? What do the needles look like?

SC-3Generally, acupuncture does not hurt. Some people feel a small pinch as the needles enter, and others feel nothing: some acupuncture points may be more sensitive than others. Most people, though, discover a new, and perhaps, strange experience but not uncomfortable. Acupuncture needles are solid needles, not hollow like hypodermic needles, and they are much, much thinner – about the diameter of a thick human hair and very flexible. The stainless steel needles are sterile, individually packaged and never reused. You can see a picture of a needle here.

What can I expect from my initial visit?

Your first visit will last an hour and a half. First, Suzanne will sit down with you to complete a full health intake, starting with what is causing you the most suffering and including information on all body systems. This will be followed by a diagnostic exam that will include taking your pulse, examining your tongue and palpating areas of your body, usually the abdomen, arms, legs and any areas of pain. Then, you will receive your first acupuncture treatment. Suzanne will walk you through the first treatment slowly and gently as she administers the acupuncture, and then leaves you to relax in a warm, dark room and let the needles do their work. Most patients find this time very relaxing and often fall asleep. After your treatment, Suzanne will go over any immediate recommendations for diet or lifestyle changes before you leave. She will then come up with a treatment plan for you and prescribe any necessary herbal formulas.

What is Chinese herbal medicine?

Chinese herbal medicine takes a holistic approach to understanding normal function and disease processes and focuses as much on the prevention of illness as on the treatment.   Most diseases or illnesses present with a core set of recognizable signs and symptoms, but the actual presentation of a particular disease or illness will vary from person to person, depending on their unique constitution and circumstances. For this reason, people with similar health conditions may be provided with quite different Chinese herbal medicine prescriptions.

A qualified practitioner is able to prescribe a Chinese herbal formula that specifically matches and treats your individual health problem. As your condition changes and improves with treatment, the Chinese herbal treatment is also adjusted and modified until the desired health outcome is achieved. A good formula rarely causes side effects. In fact, most patients find improvement in areas that seem unrelated to their chief complaint.

Today, there are more than 450 substances commonly used in Chinese herbal medicine – most are of plant origin though some animal and mineral substances may also be used.

Chinese herbal medicines are typically compounded into formulas, which take into account the individual therapeutic action of each herb and well as the effects when combined together. A well-constructed formula maximizes the effectiveness for treating a particular condition, while counteracting and minimizing the unwanted effects of an individual herb.

Are Chinese herbs safe?

Yes. But only when prescribed by a qualified herbalist and when the herbs have been tested for heavy metals, pesticides and species authenticity. Suzanne only works with pharmacies and supplement distributers that can provide third party testing for their herbal products to ensure safety and correct species use.   There are many products out there that are neither well regulated nor tested, and therefore Suzanne will often recommend specific brands of supplements or specific pharmacies from which to purchase them.

What form of payment do you accept and do you take insurance?

Suzanne accepts cash, check or any credit cards. She is out of network for most major insurance plans. To check if you have coverage, she will take down all your insurance information and confirm it for you. Patients will be expected to pay for the first visit at the time of service and then will be reimbursed once coverage is confirmed.