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Acupuncture Therapy Rising in Popularity for Cerebral Palsy Patients

A Vietnam hospital is providing acupuncture therapy to over 600 daily patients, many of whom suffer from cerebral palsy.  A disorder that affects a patient’s muscles, cerebral palsy patients often undergo medical treatment their whole lives in order to improve their quality of life.  One alternative therapy that is gaining in popularity is acupuncture.

There are no extensive studies that prove the ability of acupuncture to treat cerebral palsy, however new research indicates acupuncture may have the ability to accomplish more than many previously gave it credit for.  Most therapies that cerebral palsy patients undergo are aimed at easing pain, and building strength and flexibility in their muscles.

A research paper published in 2010 on the benefits of acupuncture for children with cerebral palsy showed that acupuncture has the potential to aid in improving a child’s ability to function better on a daily basis, and increase independence and verbal ability.  The study involved a total of 3,286 children with cerebral palsy.  Another study reported similarly that acupuncture can help with speech improvements along with boosting bone density.

In 2009 a study of 60 children with cerebral palsy researched the effects of combining acupuncture with musical therapy, and reported an improved patient movement when compared to simple acupuncture alone.

While no alternative treatments should be started without a doctor’s permission, many families who have children with cerebral palsy are looking into these alternative therapies.  They may not be a substitute for the standard therapies such as using assistive devices or partaking in speech therapy, but they are options available.

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