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Amy's Story -2

A mysterious pain took her 11 years of life                                                           Nothing worked even acupuncture


Part Two — My frustration in a deep dark cave

TCM principle —The holistic method

Thousands of years ago, there was no diagnostic equipment like microscopes or ultrasounds in ancient China. TCM doctors have no choice but to regard the whole body as a BlackBox, meaning a completely unknown entity. They worked with this BlackBox for over 5,000 years, observing its external performance and internal response to stimuli. Learned about effective and ineffective modalities while honing their skills in diagnosing and treating diseases. Through the summary of generation after generation, the TCM system was established.

TCM is an independent and adequate medical system. Nowadays, its unique ways of diagnosing diseases, such as checking pulse, analyzing the tongue and other aspects of the body, and its effective treatment, such as acupuncture, massage, and herbs, have been widely spread and utilized in Asia and the world.

While diagnosing Amy's inner landscape through her pulse and tongue, I discovered a different Amy. The presented calm young woman had harbored incredible stresses to herself, so strong that she had built a tornado-like wildfire inside her body, meaning, her bodily hormone system had been severely interrupted.  After all, the body won't be able to function under such pressure.  

Amy anxiously looked at me. I slightly squeezed her arms with confidence and smiled back at her. 

TCM weapon — Acupuncture

Our body is an incredible self-healing machine. In other words, it is designed to heal itself. Amy's symptoms only indicated that her inner problem was overwhelming and that her bodily protective system was compromised or collapsed. Acupuncture can positively trigger the whole body to return to harmony through the meridian system. The effect of acupuncture comes from stimulating the meridian system.

The Meridian system is a network that has three primary functions;  

  1. It channels the entire body, internal and external, top to toes, organs, and tissues. In doing so to binds our bodies tightly together as a functional whole.
  2. It is a defensive barrier protecting us from environmental pathogens and intruders.
  3. It closely supervises hormones and immune and circulatory functions and neutralizes and conditions the entire body.

I performed acupuncture treatment on Amy, focusing on smoothing her mental stage and resetting her body's healing function. It lasted for 40 minutes. Most patients could fall into deep relaxation, even asleep in waves of ocean music play during the session. Meanwhile, I went back to Mary to find out more about Amy.

"Amy is very demanding of herself and often extremely tense. Her periods without oral contraceptives are heavy and associated with a great deal of cramping." Mary recalled. That was the Amy under my fingertips — the pulse diagnosis.  

Amy looked peaceful, relaxed, and happy when she woke up from her treatment. I asked her to stay on the treatment table to relax for a couple more minutes before getting up and letting her family into the room. Before closing the door behind me, I heard Amy say to them, "I feel so refreshed….”

According to my clinical experience, I should treat Amy three times weekly to fix her quickly. It may take a couple of weeks, but if I can only treat her once a week, that would take a much longer time, and possibly cause us to repeatedly have to start over.  

I was hesitant to tell her the treatment plan due to the long-distance drive and the expenses. My services, including consulting, acupuncture, and herbal therapy, are not covered by health insurance. Amy's family, however, eagerly committed to the treatment plan. They seemed not bothered by the long hours of driving, but it sure did  bother me. I told my staff that if I could not quickly fix Amy, she might kill me, for I couldn't stand what she had to go through to come get here. I was optimistic and confident about helping Amy. 


Amy had been coming three times a week for two months, but her pain and swelling remained the same. In my clinical routine, I have designed a New Patients Plan for all new patients, which consists of four acupuncture treatments within two weeks. It is a shortcut to jump-start the body's healing. It usually gets a great result. But This protocol seemed not for Amy. I began to doubt my ability with her.

Instead of giving up, I tried harder and harder but felt we were not going anywhere. Soon, it started haunting me, even in my dreams. I finally decided to ask Amy not to come anymore. It was the hardest decision for me to make. Because I didn't like to admit failure, and I didn't want to give up on Amy, especially knowing I was the last resort for her. But I had to tell her about my struggles.

"Amy, I am so sorry. I believe I can't help you." When this word came out of my mouth, I could feel my heart crushing inside me; I quickly grabbed a nearby table to make myself stand still.

"Oh, Dr. Na, you are the only one who has helped me so much. I don't want to stop. Please continue treating me, please." She pleaded anxiously.

"Really? But your symptoms stay the same each time you came." I was confused, but felt a big relief.

"I am not the same; I am feeling much better." Amy firmly confirmed. 

Another two months continued, and her problems were still the same, at least in my eyes. I read all I could find late at night, searched online aggressively, and tried harder each time I saw her. Nothing seemed to change the game, and finally, I thought, perhaps, it was an incurable disease, as everyone was saying.

One day, during her treatment, I asked about her bowel movement.

"Oh, I am fine with that part." She attempted to ignore the question.

"How fine?" I insisted.

"About once a week." She answered quietly.

Boom! That is it! 

TCM weapon — Chinese Herbal Formula

Immediately, I prescribed two of my advanced herbal formulas; #16-1 Intestinal Clean and #28-1 Pain Reliever. And then, waited anxiously.

Next time, Amy drove herself! She came in and stated that her symptoms went away within a couple of days of taking the herbs. She has been pain-free and painkiller free since. I scrutinized her hands and foot and could not find the swelling that had haunted me for four months. Her hands and the foot looked beautifully healthy. Tears poured down my face while giving her the last treatment.

On that same day, I ended Amy's scheduling. She was worried that things would get worse again, just like before. I stood by my decision and told her she could always find me if she needed more help. 

The following week, however, Amy came in again without an appointment. She stood in the hallway, waiting for me, agitated.

"Amy, why are you here?" I was surprised to see her. I thought she might come to pick up some paperwork in the office and stop by to greet me.

"I am afraid." She murmured.

"Do you have a regular bowel movement?" I asked,

"Yes, every day." She was happy about it.

"Do you have any pain?" I asked while checking on her hands; they looked perfectly reasonable.

"No, but.." All sudden, she started crying.

"Oh, Amy!" I hugged her tight and whispered, "I will write to you to explain why you shouldn't be worried about the recurrence. Please go home, enjoy your life." 

As other patients were waiting, I had to say bye-bye to her. Before leaving, I held her face with both hands and looked into her eyes to ensure she was okay. I wrote Amy the letter in the evening that day, hoping to ease her mind as soon as possible. 

Question: If herb is so powerful, should we give up acupuncture?

(That is all for today.  Part Three is on its way.)

Good night everyone