By JULLIE Y. DAZA
Speaking as an unlicensed medical consultant and survivor of that thing called severe muscle pain, I can attest that acupuncture is the shortest way to pain management.
Not everybody believes in acupuncture although the Chinese have lived with it and its easy, inexpensive applications for 3,000 years. One of the most famous practitioners is Sister Regina Liu of the Missionary Sisters of the Immaculate Conception of the Mother of God in Quezon City. Sister comes from a long line of Chinese doctors in the Mainland but she earned her masteral degree and doctorate in Eastern medicine in, of all places, California, USA.
Pain is a signal that something’s wrong, and what’s wrong is an imbalance in the body between the yin and yang, according to Sister. Between your yang and my yin, only a small minority of pain sufferers will admit that they grasp that bit about imbalance, until a dozen or so slim, very slim and shiny acupuncture needles have done their work. “Are you afraid to look at the needles?” Sister asked the first time I sought her help. Two Western-educated doctors had told me my pain was due to severe muscular spasm. I didn’t have to fall from a motorcycle to suffer pain of such intensity on my right shoulder that I would scream as soon as the car started moving.
Forty-five minutes with Sister and her needles was all I needed, one session and that was it. No medicines to swallow, no exercise more strenuous than five lazy minutes of stretching that I had learned from a therapist long ago. Another exercise was dumping the neck brace that I had worn for weeks.
Sister Regina and Sister Michele, assisted by a staff of nurses in their St. Francis Clinic (tel. 8373-5503) have seen the interest in acupuncture grow to such a degree that they’ve put up a school to teach acupuncture – science or art? — to laymen.
At the end of that memorable session with Sister Regina, she dared me to look at the needles. Gathering my courage and full of hope that this meant bidding goodbye to the pain, I did. Next time, I warned a nurse, I will ask Sister to make me a baby. That’s her other expertise.