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I have spasms inmy back just below the shoulder blade.

We think that the first thing you might want to do is to see your GP to rule out any other underlying conditions for which this might be a presenting symptom. The fact that you are unable to lie or sit comfortably suggests something quite a deal more problematic than a simple muscle strain, and there are a number of health issues, like niggling gall bladder problems, which can generate referred pain in the shoulder area. On the surface these feel like muscular pains but actually aren't, so you need someone with an expert medical eye to have a good look first to exclude anything which needs conventional treatment. This is unlikely, but it is probably what we would recommend if you came to treatment.

If it is a simple muscle spasm then it is quite possible that acupuncture might well be able to relieve the pain and also reduce or remove the cause. All versions of acupuncture, both traditional and medical, have ways of understanding this kind of symptom and clearly defined protocols for dealing with the problem. Obviously we believe that traditional acupuncture offers slightly more, because in our experience a symptom is usually the outward manifestation of a more deep rooted imbalance. While in many cases treating the symptom will clear it for good there are often times where not looking at the overall picture will just offer temporary relief, and when the symptom returns the patient will conclude that the acupuncture hasn't worked, which is a shame.

Generally speaking, though, traditional acupuncture is premised on the good flow of energy, called 'qi' by the Chinese' and treatment is aimed at adjusting the flow and balance of energy to ensure good function. There are some occasions, though, where other interventions, like chiropractic and osteopathy, can deal with structural problems very directly, if these are the cause of the problem, and we often work alongside colleagues in both traditions to ensure that structure and function are treated together.

Without more detail, though, there isn't much more that we can say. The best advice we can give is that you visit a local BAcC member so that they can actually see the problem and talk in a little more depth about how it started and what works in relieving your discomfort. This will give you a far better idea of what may be possible. Most members are only too happy to give up a little time without charge to prospective patients so that they can offer a more balanced view of whether acupuncture treatment might help.

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