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An Overview – Acupuncture

Acupuncture is an holistic approach to health based on over 2,000 years of development and refinement in the Far East of a technique of inserting and manipulating fine needles into specific points on the body to relieve pain or for therapeutic purposes. The tradition is as much about the maintenance of health as the management of disease. Western or medical acupuncture is a more recent development practised predominantly by doctors and physiotherapists which uses acupuncture techniques within their existing scope of practice on the basis of a western medical diagnosis.

Acupunture Lead Bodies

For more information, please select Lead Body – British Acupunture Council in Resources on the left, to be redirected to the British Acupunture Council site.

For a comprehensive list of evidence please select Acupunture Evidence Source 1 – BAC Public Review Papers  in Resources on the left, to view the the Public Review Papers within the BAC site.

Other evidence sources:


Acubriefs was established and is supported by a grant from the Medical Acupuncture Research Foundation (MARF). Its purpose was to make available online the most comprehensive database of references on acupuncture in the English language. Acubriefs is unfortunately not currently operational, however the 2010 database can be accessed via the contact details in the link in resources, Acupunture Evidence Source 2 – Acubriefs.


Acupuncture in Medicine is a bi-monthly scientific and clinical journal aimed at Western-trained physicians and other health professionals, and uses the prevailing understanding of neurophysiology and anatomy to interpret the effects of acupuncture. The Journal largely restricts its published articles to this Western approach. Clinical reports of the effects of traditional acupuncture are considered, and theoretical aspects that are evidence-based. Acupuncture in Medicine is owned by the British Medical Acupuncture Society and is published by BMJ. Please see Acupunture Evidence Source 3 – BMJ in Resources to be redirected.