Acupuncture is a traditional or alternative practice that originated in ancient China around 3000 years ago. It involves the insertion of thin, sterile needles into specific points on the body known as acupuncture points or meridians. The goal of acupuncture is to stimulate these points to balance the alleged flow of energy, or “qi” (pronounced “chee”), within the body. According to traditional Chinese medicine, imbalances in the flow of qi can lead to various physical and psychological issues. There is no anatomical, histological or physiological evidence that Qi, meridians, or the actual acupuncture points even exist. The overwhelming preponderance of the well-conducted high-quality controlled trials generally show that acupuncture is no better than a placebo.


Wikipedia calls acupuncture, “a pseudoscience; the theories and practices of TCM are not based on scientific knowledge, and it has been characterized as quackery.“. Noted skeptic, the neurologist Steven Novella is credited with describing acupuncture as a “theatrical placebo” implying that any purported clinical benefits of acupuncture are due to the theatrics of the clinical encounter. There are plenty of testimonials and anecdotes for the benefits of acupuncture, but that perceived benefit could more likely be based on responses that could be explained by the placebo effect, the natural history of the symptoms, regression to the mean, positive mood changes and the benefits of the therapeutic alliance rather than the actual efficacy of the acupuncture itself.

Special Pleading:
Logical fallacy

External Links:
The Efficacy of Acupuncture on the Foot and Ankle for Pain (Podiatry Arena)
Acupuncture for Plantar Fasciitis (Podiatry Arena)

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Other Alternative Practices:

AcupuntureAmino Neuro FrequencyApplied KinesiologyAyurvedaChinese Medicine
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