Immediate Pain Reduction May Decrease Long Term Opioid Use
Battlefield Acupuncture (BFA) is a specialized acupuncture procedure designed for veterans experiencing chronic pain. These patients were managing their chronic pain with prescription opioids. Several studies concluded that the patients who received BFA experienced immediate pain relief that lasted up to 2 weeks after the procedure. This is exciting news as further studies are being performed to prove the long term effectiveness for the reduction of opioid use.
How it works: The procedure, developed in 2001, is designed to be utilized in the field as well as in a clinical setting. BFA involves the application of a stimulus to 5 key points in the ear. These tiny needles are inserted with minimal pain and are worn for several days. They will fall out naturally. The insertion process only takes about 5 – 10 minutes.
Effectiveness: BFA has been shown to reduce stress, trauma and pain. In one study, the treatment reduced pain in 63% of the patients, reduced physical stress by 27%, the stress hormone cortisol was reduced by 14%. Another study of 753 veterans an immediate decrease in pain was reported by 82% of the patients. This treatment holds great promise in the fight to prevent opioid addiction.
Long term benefits: As with acupuncture in general, BFA jumpstarts your body’s ability to produce its own pain killers. This relief from pain, combined with a nutrition plan, physical therapy and rest, enables the patient to heal naturally. Additionally, patients can immediately resume work and other activities because the treatment helps reduce opioid use and its mentally debilitating effects.
If you or someone you know is a veteran experiencing chronic pain, call us today for your initial evaluation. The treatment may be covered by insurance (we will advise you prior to your appointment).