Acupuncture also brings relief to four-footed

October 27th, 2008 - 2:20 pm ICT by IANS  

Washington, Oct 27 (IANS) Tiny, sharp needles brought Gypsy, a horse, much needed relief at a Maryland veterinary centre.Gypsy had an ankle infection for which Mark Crisman, a professor at Virginia Tech’s Regional College of Veterinary medicine, used acupuncture - along with traditional therapy - to help strengthen her bones and immune system.

Acupuncture, a technique of inserting and manipulating very fine needles into specific points on the body to relieve pain has lately gained popularity and recognition in veterinary medicine.

“Acupuncture has proved to be a safe and relatively painless treatment for a variety of illnesses in animals,” said Crisman who has been practising the therapy for over a decade on equine patients and now teaches others who desire certification.

The Virginia-Maryland Regional College of Veterinary Medicine’s Teaching Hospital offers this therapy to both large and small animals. Conditions that respond well to acupuncture range from skin disorders to musculoskeletal issues to neurological problems, according to a Virginia Tech release.

“While pain and osteoarthritis are common conditions we treat with acupuncture in small animals,” said Bess Pierce, an associate professor at Virginia Tech, who is leading the hospital’s community practice, “we certainly provide therapy for a multitude of problems”.

Veterinarians who wish to practise acupuncture must undergo an additional training process. With the recent completion of her certification, Beverley Purswell, a professor, brings the total of certified veterinary acupuncturists in the college to four.

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