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Acupuncture is a treatment derived from ancient Chinese medicine in which fine needles are inserted at certain sites in the body for therapeutic or preventative purposes.
How acupuncture is performed
An initial acupuncture session will involve an assessment of general health, a medical history and a physical examination, followed by insertion of acupuncture needles into the skin.
Common uses of acupuncture
Acupuncture practitioners use the treatment for a wide range of health problems.
Safety and regulation of acupuncture
There is no statutory regulation of acupuncture in England, but many non-medical acupuncture practitioners are required to register with their local authority.
Evidence for its effectiveness
There is some scientific evidence acupuncture has a beneficial effect for a number of health conditions.