Acupuncture for Stroke: Recovery, Rehabilitation and Chronic Care
Patients recovering from stroke show a staggering variety of symptoms, from disabling motor and speech deficits to subtle perceptual and emotional changes. Acupuncture can help greatly, but many practitioners are unable to treat patients and loved ones in the acute phase due to doctors’ concerns (or their own).
Drawing on her recent PhD research and over a decade of in-hospital teaching experience, Dr. Citkovitz demystifies the potentially intimidating interface between East Asian and Western medical diagnosis and treatment. Practitioners will learn to use a manual for systematically assessing and prioritising the multiple overlapping patterns of disharmony that commonly present in acute and chronic stroke care. Developed for both research and clinical work, the manual provides for practitioner discretion, within an evidence-informed structure that allows acupuncturists to provide a consistent, cohesive and personally appropriate plan of care.
Guidelines for prioritised assessment and treatment include: blood pressure, cognitive function, retention or incontinence of bowels and/or urine, constitutional factors such as phlegm, blood stasis, heat and cold, speech, swallowing, balance, and upper and lower extremity motor function. Techniques taught include scalp and channel balancing acupuncture, auricular acupressure, tui na and qigong. The class will explore practical questions such as: how can we feasibly incorporate acupuncture into post-stroke care, and what effects should we expect in which patients? Which arguments regarding safety and efficacy will be most persuasive to physicians? How soon should we treat, how often, and how can we make treatment financially workable for elderly patients on a fixed income?
An internationally known lecturer on acupuncture practice and research methodology, she is a faculty member for the Pacific College of Oriental Medicine and the American College of Traditional Chinese Medicine. Her PhD study on acupuncture during acute stroke rehabilitation was the first conducted in the United States, as was her 2006 study of acupuncture during labor and delivery.