Dr.Fan has been active in using acupuncture and Chinese herbology to treat movement disorders since 1990. At that time he was in the neurology department of a University hospital in Nanjing City, China. He treated 16 cases of Meige’s syndrome, the dystonia disorder of face and neck parts. Among them, six patients were clinically cured after one year of treatment, seven patients improved significantly, and three patients improved somewhat. Since coming to the U.S. in 2001, Dr. Fan has treated three dystonia patients, with good results.
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One called recently. Because she had had so many Botox shots to treat her dystonia, she had been afraid of acupuncture (even though acupuncture does not hurt). So she had taken only Chinese herbal pills and herbal tea treatment, but even this, without acupuncture, was very helpful, she reported, and the pills especially were good at controlling muscle tone and correcting involuntary movement. Before and after the treatment, “there was a big difference,” she said. So she will come again and bring her sister, who has the same problem. (Aug.7, 2007 notes.)
Another woman who has dystonia at her neck is still under our treatment. She feels “significantly improved,” and can after treatment use her neck properly, leaning only a little bit. The symptom she had initially described as “an elephant sitting on my upper back (end of neck)” disappeared after a few sessions of acupuncture treatment.
Here is another case for your reference. A 36-year-old woman began to experience involuntary movement in 2001 after she recoverd from a “six-week long cold (influenza).” Her dystonia was a generalized unvoluntary movement, involving all extremities and trunk, especially neck and shoulders, hands and feet. Her right side was worse than the left. She could not walk more than 200 steps, and had to use a wheel-chair when she went shopping because when very tired her toes spasmed. In the last four years the dystonia had also affected her voice and face. Sometime she could not speak due to the involuntary movement of tongue and thorat muscles. She had taken many medications but stopped them because she could not bear the adverse effects. For four years she had had to take a Botox shot every 3 months. Currently already no.6 month, she did not get the shot because her doctor was sick. Her self evaluation for dystonia score was 7 (0 = no dystonia, 10 = unbearable dystonia).
Upon initial physical examination, her muscle tone was significantly increased (in the range of +++ / ++++, means spasm) after using a particular muscle 3-4 times. Her right side was more affected than her left, and she walked very slowly, with a feet-turned-in gait and all toes curled. The test for pointing nose and moving one side heel to another side knee-tibia-ankle, were very difficult for her to complete. All her fingers were curved. She could not complete the turn-over hand test; when she attempted to perform this test, she also showed involuntary movement in her neck, throat and shoulders (spasms with pain).
We did scalp and body acupuncture on June 19, 2007. Immediate after treatment, this patient showed immediate improvement: pointing nose very acurately, doing turn-over hands very freely. Muscle tone was back to almost normal (++). And she could walk very easily, and all toes and fingers could stretch; especially when walking her toes could go up as those of normal people. Her voice was also clearer than before. The one side heel to another side knee-tibia-ankle test, was still clumsy although better than before.
No.3 treatment was on July 3, 2007. She reported that she was on the third day of her menstrual period, and that generally the dystonia was worse when her period was coming, when she was getting sick or having bad emotions, and during bad weather. Even so, after getting two acupuncture treatment and taking herbal pills, the dystonia was still improving. Today she just had a little bit of spasm at both hands and feet.
No.4 treatment was on July 17, 2007. Her dystonia self-evaluation score for symptoms is 1-2 . No obvious spasm at neck-shoulders and hands, feet. No voice problem.
By August 7, 2007, the patient had received a total of seven acupuncture treatments, and her condition was much improved.
Dystonia Case one:
Nine month ago, I was diagnosed with a neurological disorder called dystonia. This disorder greatly impacted my ability to speak and control the muscle movement around my mouth. I had been seeing several neurologists, specialists and the best solution that they recommended was Botox injections. While they Botox provided limited relief, it was not until I visited Dr. Fan that O saw big improvement. In fact, after 5 treatments, I experienced a 90% improvement in my ability to speak. Incredible!
Dystonia Case two:
Having been under the care of an acupuncturist for 20 years. I sought Dr. Fan after my acupuncturist was no longer able to send me herbs. For 14 years, I had been only on the herbs for nerve damage. Although Dr.Yeh(the former acupuncturist) was able to slowly return my movement to normal, I was still only about 70-80 percent healed. Dr. Yeh had told me that complete regeneration was the goal. Dr. Fan saw me and relieved a great deal of pressure from my neck. I had told him that it was like an elephant was standing on my shoulders and neck. My movement was quite stiff. My movement now is nearly 90-95 percent better and with herbal tea we have nearly stabilized the situation. With much thanks!