Since 1985

Hello my name is Dr. Daniel B. Kim and I have practiced traditional oriental medicine for over 30 years, specializing in acupuncture, acupressure/cupping, and herbal remedies.  I began my practice in the bay area in 1985. 
We accept most insurance carriers including but not limited to:
Kaiser Permanente | Aetna | ASHP | Blue Cross | Blue Shield | Cigna | Californiacare | Carfarm | Great West | NY Life | Healthnet |

| Prudential |United Healthcare | Landmark | Lifeguard | Workers Compensation | Auto Insurance |

Questions & Answers About Acupuncture
      Information For patients
Q:  What is acupuncture?

A:  Acupuncture is the insertion of fine needles into the body at specific points shown as effective in the treatment of specific health problems.  These points have been mapped by the Chinese over a period of two thousand years.  Recently, electromagnetic research has confirmed their locations.

Q:  How deep do the needles go?

A:  That depends upon the nature of the problem, the location of the points selected, the patient's size, age, and constitution, and upon the acupuncturist's style or school.  Usually, needles are inserted from 1/4 to 1 inch in depth.

Q:  Does it hurt?

A:  If your practitioner has obtained the correct stimulus of the needle, the patient should feel some cramping, heaviness, distention, tingling, or electric sensation either around the needle or traveling up or down the affected meridian, or energy pathway.  In Chinese, acupuncture is bu ton, painless.  Some Western cultures may categorize these sensations as types of pain.  In any case, if you experience any discomfort, it is usually mild.  Patients very rarely complain of any discomfort or pain.

Q:  Are the needles clean?

A:  The best practice among acupuncturists in America today is to use sterilized, individually packaged, disposable needles.  Needles should not be saved or reused for later treatments.  This eliminates the possibility of transmitting a communicable disease by a contaminated needle.

Q:  How does acupuncture work?

A:  Modern Western medicine cannot explain how acupuncture works.  Traditional acupuncture is based on ancient Chinese theories of the flow of Q (Energy) and Xue (Blood) through distinct meridians or pathways that cover the body somewhat like the nerves and blood vessels do.  According to ancient theory, acupuncture allows Qi to flow to areas where it is Deficient and away from where it is Excess.  In this way, acupuncture regulates and restores the harmonious energetic balance of the body.

Q:  Are there different styles of acupuncture?

A:  Yes there are.  Acupuncture originated in China but has spread first to Korea, then Japan, Vietnam, Europe, the British Isles, and America.  In different countries, different styles have developed based on differing opinions as to theory and technique.  Patients should talk to their practitioners about their particular style and learn as much as possible about  the treatment being proposed. 

Q:  Is there anything I need to do before receiving an acupuncture treatment?

A:  Yes, The following suggestions will help you get the maximum benefits from your treatment.

1.  Maintain good personal hygiene to reduce the possibility of bacterial infection.
2.  To prevent loss, do not wear jewelry.
3.  Wear loose clothing.  Women should not wear one-piece dresses.  Avoid wearing tight stockings.
4.  Avoid treatment when excessively fatigued, hungry, full, emotionally upset, or shortly after sex.

Q:  Is there anything I need to do while receiving acupuncture?

A:  Yes, again.

1.  Relax.  There is no need to be frightened.  Ask your practitioner any questions you have along the way so that you can get the most benefit possible from the treatment.
2.  Do not change your position or move suddenly.   If you are uncomfortable, tell your practitioner.
3.  Some people experience dizziness, nausea, cold sweat, shortness of breath, or faintness during treatment.  This often occurs if you are nervous.  Inform your practitioner immediately so he or she can readjust or withdraw the needles.  Also let your practitioner know if you feel an increasing amount of pain or burning sensation during the treatment.
4.  If you find your treatment unbearable at any point, be sure to speak up so that your practitioner can make the proper adjustments or stop the treatment.

Q:  What can I expect after treatment?

A:  you may note a spot of blood at one or more of the needles sites and/or a small bruise could develop.  These should not be harmful, but talk to your practitioner if you are concerned.

Patients often experience the most dramatic results in the first treatment.  Some patients experience an immediate total or partial relief of their pain or other symptoms.  This relief may last or some pain may return.  In a few cases, there may be no immediate relief only to notice the pain diminish over the next couple of days.  Generally, you should expect to feel better.

Q:  What criteria should one use in choosing an acupuncturist?

A:  Patients should ask about where the practitioner trained, how long the training was, how long he or she has been in practice, and what experience the practitioner has had in treating the patient's specific ailment.

Q:  How many treatments will I need?

A:  That depends upon the duration, severity, and nature of your complaint.  You may need only a single treatment for an acute condition.  A series of five to fifteen treatments may resolve many chronic problems.  Some degenerative conditions may require many treatments over time.