Acupuncture is a treatment involving the use of sterile needles, pressure or heat to stimulate specific points on an animal’s body. Treatments can relieve pain through the release of pain modulating substances in the brains such as endorphins and serotonin, by competing with the transmission of chronic pain along nerve pathways (Gate theory) and local immunomodulation responses such as myofascial trigger points.
In veterinary medicine, there is evidence of the success of acupuncture for treating disorders of the reproductive, musculoskeletal, neurologic, pulmonary, gastrointestinal and dermatologic systems. The most common conditions that are treated include traumatic nerve injuries, intervertebral disk disease, degenerative myelopathy, epilepsy and other central nervous system disorders; and chronic pain such as that caused by degenerative joint disease and arthritis.
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