A new article was published by the Journal of Medical Acupuncture in (August 2016) Volume 28, Number 4, 2016.
Heming Zhu, Heidi Most. Dry Needling Is One Type of Acupuncture. Medical Acupuncture 2016; 28(4):1-10. DOI: 10.1089/acu.2016.1187
Background: Acupuncture has been practiced in Western countries for more than 40 years. One type of needling therapy termed dry needling has gained popularity rapidly since 2000. However a strong debate and conflict exists between proponents of dry needling by physical therapists and proponents of acupuncture.
Objectives: This review explores similarities and differences between dry needling and acupuncture and provides suggestions for debate and solutions for conflict between nonphysician dry needling practitioners and acupuncturists.
Materials and Methods: This review selected four features of needling technique and explored the similarities and differences between dry needling and acupuncture. The four features were: (1) needles used; (2) target points; (3) action mechanisms; and 4) therapeutic effects. A PubMed search for articles on dry needling and acupuncture for the years spanning 1941 to 2015 was also used to determine how many articles were retrieved
for each topic and how levels of interest in each topic changed.
Results: It was observed that both dry needling and acupuncture shared needles, target points, action mechanisms, and therapeutic effects, and could be used to treat musculoskeletal disease effectively. However, because of a lack of adequate training and good regulation, acupuncturists question the safety of dry needling.
Conclusions: Acupuncture is more inclusive and dry needling is one type of acupuncture when acupuncture needles are used. Collaboration and integration should be strengthened between dry needling practitioners who are not physicians and acupuncturists so that the patients can receive safe and high-quality acupuncture treatment. Five suggestions were proposed for solutions to solve the conflict and debate between dry needling
Key Words: Dry Needling, Acupuncture, Trigger Points, Acupoints