Kristen Sparrow, MD Medical Acupuncture 

Ancient Medicine Made Modern

Golden Gate Park Conservatory
SF City Sights: Golden Gate Park Conservatory of Flowers
The International Scientific Acupuncture and Meridian  Symposium (ISAMS) in Stockholm was lively and well attended. 20 countries were represented, not bad!  People came from as far away as Brazil, India, and Korea. This newsletter will highlight some of the new studies presented, and more to be discussed in the blog going forward.  I was able to discuss my poster with friends, colleagues, and other attendees.

I am glad to be back and look  forward to seeing you in the clinic
Always more at the blog.  



First, Do No Harm
Hormone Replacement Therapy and Epidural Steroid Injections

Hormone Replacement Therapy is still under scrutiny and it's pretty difficult to tell who is as risk and who isn't.  Play it safe and go naturally with acupuncture for symptoms of menopause.
A new study in Anesthesiology finds that steroids may not be a key component of epidural injections and more studies are needed to tell if injections near the spine (ahem, acupuncture?) are just as effective.

Autumn in Stockholm: Foliage at the Karolinska Institute
Acupuncture Research Files
Studies from conference: Hot flashes, Depression, Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome, Achilles Tendonitis, Dementia
 One pain specialist in Britain has gotten great results treating hot flashes from Tamoxifen with a combination of acupuncture and self administered acupuncture. Great idea since often long term acupuncture is required. Another British researcher showed not only efficacy of acupuncture for depression, but also cost effectiveness.  Ongoing research shows acupuncture works well for stabilizing menstrual cycles in PCOS patients.  New science shows why acupuncture works for Achilles tendonitis.  Theoretical work by Manni in Italy may provide hope for dementia through acupuncture.

Fitness and Health Files
Why runners don't get Osteoarthritis and Twelve Tips for Sleep

As recently as 10 years ago, it was thought that running could hurt your knees.  Now the thinking is that if your knees are okay to begin with, running should be fine.
This article from the Harvard Web Site  addresses the issue of insomnia and difficulty staying asleep, and gives 12 common sense suggestions. I recommend melatonin, (1 mg or less please!) as a safe supplement if basic sleep hygiene leaves you still wide awake at night. 

Ancient Medicine Made Modern
Poster for Stockholm
For the Record

My poster explored a group of patients extremely sensitive to needling and compared them to patients who had no needle sensitivity.  They all presented for help with anxiety. There was no difference in response (in this case study all responded well to treatment.) I compared their Stress Response (Heart Rate Variability) and there was no difference between the two groups.  My conclusion was that gentle needling is still effective and sometimes called for. 
The whole point of my line of inquiry is to try to get a physiological "snap shot" of effective versus non-effective treatment, or response versus non-response to treatment. This is part of my main effort to improve treatment and get better results.  The fact remains that most patients respond (responders), some dramatically (profound responders), and sadly there is that group that don't (non-responders.)  Why??  A quixotic mission...

Kristen Sparrow, MD
2000 Van Ness Ave Ste 506
San Francisco, CA  94109

Dr. Sparrow provides innovative treatments combining ancient Chinese medicine with cutting edge scientific research to provide relief of pain, mood imbalances, immune disorders and stress.