Monday, November 5, 2007

Acupunture: Gaining Acceptance

It is quite common these days to hear about people turning to acupuncture as a last resort for relief from chronic health problems. The popularity of alternative therapies such as acupuncture is variable among developed countries, but public demand is strong and growing. In recent surveys published in the Journal of American Medical Association (1998), the percentage of the public reporting use of at least one alternative therapy in the U.S. increased from 38 % in 1990 to 42 % in 1997. Estimates available from Europe show the corresponding percentage to be much higher, particularly for acupuncture and homeopathy (British Medical Journal, 1994). A few years ago, the Food and Drug Administration estimated that 9 to 12 million acupuncture treatments were being performed annually, and this estimate is surely much higher now.

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