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Pins and needles in feet and hands, difficulty in breathing and feeling weak

Q:  I have had pins and needles feeling in both hands since Tuesday and has got worse over the days. I now have numbness in my whole body in particular the chest area, pins and needles feeling my feet and hands and I also feel very weak and find it difficult to breathe as my chest feels ‘heavy’. I thought it might be to do with the wrists at first but it has since got worse. I have had blood tests done in A&E when my condition got worse which have come back normal. They have since discharged me back to my GP. Will acupuncture help get rid of this problem?

A:  Although we are sure that acupuncture may well be able to help with some of the problems which you are experiencing, we think that you should first establish what is going on in western medical terms by going back to your GP and seeking a further referral on to a specialist consultant if need be.
 
We are a little concerned by the collection of symptoms which are troubling you, some of which are what we call 'red flags', symptoms which need to be checked very carefully to establish exactly what is going on. Any acupuncturist in the BAcC will take the same view if you approach them. As soon as you have a reliable diagnosis for what is going on and have ruled out serious underlying pathologies we are sure that you may find acupuncture beneficial. One of the great strengths of Chinese medicine is its ability to make sense of a variety of symptoms across the body in a known pattern, and there are clearly relationships which we see between some of the symptoms which make sense from a Chinese medicine perspective.
 
However, chest pains and numbness in the fingers always need to be investigated thoroughly by orthodox medicine alongside any complementary treatment you might seek. In the case of acupuncture we always recommend to members that they do not start treating until the symptoms have been studied in great detail to avoid blurring the diagnosis. 

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