Acupuncture Specialist







Hey, this is Brian Carter, founder of  I've been writing to regular folks about alternative medicine solutions for the last 5 years now, and we've reached more than 300,000 people around the world.  
My first book, Powerful Body, Peaceful Mind: How to Heal Yourself with Foods, Herbs, and Acupressure will be published by the end of November.  I literally can't wait to talk to you about it and answer your questions!  That's why I'm starting a series of Teleseminars.  These are phone conference presentations that everyone calls into.  I'll speak on a topic like 'Boosting Your Energy' or 'Introduction to Acupuncture', and then, answer questions from the audience.
Right now you can help me decide which topics to do first - just fill out the survey on this page.  Then, if you want us to contact you later, click on the email link under my black and white photo to tell us.  I look forward to meeting you and working with you!
Brian Carter's Healing Teleseminars



Brian Carter, acupuncturist, herbalist, and author

Brian B. Carter, MS, LAc

The Acupuncture Specialist
by Brian Benjamin Carter, MS, LAc

Brian is the founder of the Pulse of Oriental Medicine. He teaches at the Pacific College of Oriental Medicine and maintains a private practice in San Diego, California, and is the author of Powerful Body, Peaceful Mind: How to Heal Yourself with Foods, Herbs, and Acupressure.

Acupuncture is the main therapy I use on patients.

But it's only one of Chinese medicine's therapies. The others include a sophisticated system of herbal medicine, an acupressure-like massage style called tui na (twee nah), qi gong (exercises to increase vitality), and tai chi (a series of movements that conditions the body and calms the mind). Not to mention the whole preventive/balancing system of food cures, life habits, emotions, and exercise we can advise you about.

So would you call me an acupuncture specialist?

I don't know...I like practicing acupuncture. It works. It makes people feel better. It helps when other medical interventions can't. And sometimes it keeps people from needing surgery.

And yes it can cure things. You wouldn't believe how much bunk there is on the internet about acupuncture. On my web site, and in my book, you'll find the credible research reviewed by the U.S. National Institutes of Health, and more recently and comprehensively, the World Health Organization.

I like acupuncture better than herbs - not because herbs aren't amazing - they've healed my migraines, and I've seen them treat lupus, acid reflux, and all kinds of other things. But they take lots more time, they're lots more complex, and I'm a busy writing speaking kind of guy. So call me an acupuncture specialist. I won't mind.

In China, doctors of the traditional bent (in addition to receiving conventional Western medical training) focus on either herbs or acupuncture.

It's not quite that way here. In California, we get a 4 year long Masters degree, and our licensing exam is only 17% acupuncture; the rest is herbs, laws, diagnosis, theory, etc.

On the national level, most states require the national acupuncture licensing exam. And some students go to schools that only teach acupuncture.

So some of us traditional Chinese medicine people are acupuncture specialists.

But then you have the medical acupuncturists.

This is the name given (for whatever reason) to people without traditional acupuncture training who practice acupuncture. Which is strange, because usually the word medical is a good thing. But here, it means: someone who learned a healing therapy outside of the institutions that specialize in teaching it. This includes NDs, DCs, DOs, and MDs - the NDs and DCs may learn in a school, may be real LAc's (licensed acupuncturists), but DOs and MDs tend to take very short courses (live weekend sessions or watch videos at home) that don't compare to our years of training at all.

MD physicians who practice acupuncture might call themselves acupuncture specialists because most MDs have a specialty (like pediatrics, geriatrics, sports medicine, etc.). But many MDs will tell you that it's not a true medical specialty - medical specialties have specific academic requirements and separate internships and/or residencies.

Medical acupuncturists, on the other hand, are not held to any academic or licensing standards. They're allowed to do acupuncture because supposedly they're so good at medicine in general, that they can even practice a foreign culture's totally different medical system that's still being translated into English. This attribution of a general purpose expertise is a leftover from the old days when a country doctor had to be able to do everything. It should be abolished.

That'd be like me the acupuncturist being allowed to prescribe pharmaceutical drugs just because I'm such a hip holistic healer. Ludicrous.

But, one day their educational standards will be set in stone and in law and they may become true acupuncture specialists.

Til then, I'd trust the smartest traditional acupuncurists you can find.

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About The PULSE
All information herein provided is for educational use only and not meant to substitute for the advice of appropriate local experts and authorities.

Copyright 1999-2074, Pulse Media International, Brian Carter, MSci, LAc, Editor