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Wrist & Ankle Acupuncture:
I was exposed to this system of acupuncture when I was working in the out-patients department at the 'First Affiliated Hospital of TCM' in Beijing and further learnt to apply this style of acupuncture when I was working on the wards and out-patients department in the 'Second Affiliated Hospital of TCM' in Nanjing.

Introduction:
Wrist - Ankle acupuncture (WAA) is a modern technique of acupuncture that was invented and developed by Professor Zhang Xinshu.

The theory behind this technique of acupuncture compared to the more traditional system of acupuncture is its therapeutic basis is held succinctly in the use of six points around the wrist and ankle that correspond to certain 'body zones' that has a similarity to the dermatomes (peripheral nervous system) in Western medicine.

Body Zones: These are classified into six bilateral longitudinal zones where a division of the body is located at the diaphragm which manifests as 'upper' and 'lower' parts. Selection of points is made on the basis of division of the longitudinal zones where the imbalance is located.

Needling: using this style of acupuncture, needling takes place subcutaneously which does not induce sensations such as soreness, numbness, distension, heaviness or pain.

The advantages of using this style of acupuncture during a treatment can be classified as:

Convenient: Points are located near the wrist and ankle, so the patient only needs to expose the local area and does not need to remove their clothing during the treatment.

Painless: Needle manipulation is painless. As mentioned above there should be no sensation of soreness, numbness, distension, heaviness or pain. There may only be some initial tingling as the needle first penetrates the skin.

Safe: This particular method of needling is safe as there are no vital organs located at the wrist or ankles as the needles are inserted subcutaneously (beneath the skin).

Effective: this form of acupuncture has shown to work effectively in treating conditions due to pain as well as internal conditions, mental / emotional / psychological and neurological conditions.

It is stressed that this style of acupuncture is used as an adjunct to the more traditional Chinese style of acupuncture. As wrist - ankle acupuncture (WAA) though very effective, some conditions may not respond effectively to this style. However, this will be discussed with the patient at the time of consultation.

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