Carolyn Vachani, RN, MSN, AOCN
Abramson Cancer Center of the University of Pennsylvania
Last Modified: November 27, 2007
In the United States, 48 states now have laws regulating acupuncture practice (SD and WY do not). Six states (AL, DE, KS, MS, ND, OK) do not license acupuncturists, but allow medical or osteopathic physicians to practice acupuncture, but not all require training in the field to do so. Some states also allow acupuncture to be performed by chiropractors, dentists, podiatrists, naturopaths and nurses. View regulations by state.
National certification is offered by the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine, which is required by many states for licensure. The educational requirements for licensing vary from state to state. In 2000, there were an estimated 11,000 licensed acupuncturists in the U.S. and this number is expected to double by 2010. In addition, about 3 thousand medical and osteopathic doctors also practice acupuncture.
Ask your physician if they can recommend someone. Do you know someone who had acupuncture? Ask them about their experience and their practitioner. Search for a local practitioner on the web.
Bardia, A et al. Efficacy of complementary and alternative medicine therapies in relieving cancer pain: A systematic review. Journal of Clinical Oncology 2006; 24(34), 5457-5463.
Ezzo JM, et al. Acupuncture-point stimulation for chemotherapy-induced nausea or vomiting. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2006, Issue 2.
MacPherson, H et al. The York acupuncture safety study: prospective survey of 34000 treatments by traditional acupuncturists. British Medical Journal 2001; 323:486-487.
Micozzi. MS (Ed.) Fundamentals of Complementary and Alternative Medicine 3 rd ed, (2006). St. Louis, MO: Elsevier.
White, A et al. Adverse events following acupuncture: prospective survey of 32000 consultations with doctors and physiotherapists. British Medical Journal 2001; 323:485-486.