A Modern Twist on an Ancient Principle
By Dr. Donald Liebell
A versatile treatment device I use to help my patients is the piezoelectric stimulator. Piezo (pronounced Pi-EE-ZO) means pressure in Greek. Piezoelectricity is the term for pressure-caused electrical charge that can accumulate in various substances, particularly crystals, as well as living tissues. It was discovered in 1880 by French physicists Jacques and Pierre Curie.
Combining Ancient Healing Principles With Technology
The piezoelectric stimulator is an instrument works by means of pressure exerted on a quartz crystal, which results in a tiny electric charge. There is no battery or electrical source. It works with the existing living human electric fields. This device was studied by Japanese scientists, who were fascinated by the intimate relationship between the human body and electricity. The brain, heart, muscles, and even individual cells produce tiny amounts of electricity.
Traditional acupuncture needle technique stimulates a flow of electrical energy along well-established electric field energy channels called meridians. Researchers suggest that the piezoelectric device polarizes these meridians and produce a similar effect to needle acupuncture.
As a medical device, it can be used as a needle-free means of stimulating acupuncture points. I have been using piezoelectric stimulation for several years in my practice, and my patients have found it to be a safe, effective, and easy-to-receive treatment. Out of extreme caution, like any electrical therapy, it should not be used for patients with a cardiac pacemaker or during pregnancy (even though there have not been any reports of problems).
With each click of the instrument, both the doctor and patient feel a mild electrical sensation, similar to the static electricity feeling one may experience when touching a person after walking across a carpeted floor.
I use the metallic tip of the piezo to contact an acupuncture point, point of pain, muscle, or nerve. But my index finger of my free hand also serves as a part of the instrument’s technique, as it too contacts another of these areas. We are completing a circuit with the patient, doctor, and the piezoelectric stimulator. I serve as an electrical ground to the patient.
Treatment with the piezoelectric stimulator alone is often effective for treated various pain and other problems. I typically use it in conjunction with other treatment modalities. I’ve had considerable success with it for people with shoulder and knee pain. But I utilize it for many problems.
Dr. Donald Liebell
"Piezoelectric stimulation of acupuncture points has immediate medical applications in the clinic. It offers rapid relief of acute pain, migraine headaches, musculoskeletal pain, nausea and vomiting, and hoarseness due to viral laryngitis"
Colonel (Ret.) Dr. Richard Niemztow,
M.D., PhD., M.P.H.
"Piezoelectric Stimulation Technique of Acupuncture Points: Clinical Application"
Richard C. Niemtzow, MD
Ruben T. Ong, MD
Peter A. S. Johnstone, MD
"These results suggest that the stimulation of acupuncture command points with a piezoelectric device in this manner is effective at relieving both muscle spasm and pain. The procedure takes only
1-2 minutes to complete and no adverse effects have been noted."
- Dien Shapiro, M.D.
"Piezoelectric Stimulation Of Acupuncture Points For The Treatment Of Back And Neck Pain: A Discussion Of 3 Case Reports"
Journal: Medical Acupuncture,
Volume 13 / Number 1
Dr. Shapiro is Clinical Associate Professor of Family Practice at The University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey, Robert Wood Johnson Medical School
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Donald K. Liebell, D.C., B.C.A.O.
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