Acupuncture is a system of medical diagnosis and treatment which originated in ancient China.

Acupuncture is defined by Oregon law as a part of the practice of medicine and includes the following techniques:

  • Acupuncture is the use of thin wire needles to stimulate points on the body.
  • Acupressure uses massage techniques including Tui Na and Shiatsu.
  • Cupping is the application of suction cups.
  • Coining is a strong friction technique which produces local redness.
  • Dietary and herbal advice is based on traditional Oriental medical uses of foods and herbs and also includes the use of vitamin and mineral supplements.
  • Electroacupuncture is the use of mild pulsating current to stimulate acupuncture points and meridians.
  • Moxibustion is the application of heat to acupuncture points and meridians.
  • Acupuncture is safe, natural and drug-free.
How many treatments are necessary?

This depends on your individual condition and how well you respond to acupuncture treatment. Generally, chronic conditions require more treatment than acute; younger patients tend to heal faster than the elderly. The acupuncturist can usually estimate the number of treatments required for similar cases.

How does acupuncture work?

Acupuncture draws on the body's own ability to heal itself, apparently stimulating that function in several ways. According to traditional Chinese medical theory, acupuncture balances the energy flow of the body. Each acupuncture point has well-defined functions for the restoration of health and harmony. While the mechanisms of action remain only partially understood, there is a significant body of research demonstrating the effects of acupuncture.

Acupuncture needles

Only pre-sterilized disposable acupuncture needles are used during the procedure. Needles are used only one time and then disposed of safely.

About acupuncturists

Oregon has had licensed acupuncturists as independent practitioners for more than 20 years. The State requires three years of training in an approved program. Course work includes relevant Western biomedical sciences as well as acupuncture. A board examination is also required to be licensed as an L.Ac. (Licensed Acupuncturist).

Eligibility and cost

Acupuncture is located at SHS@Dixon (in the Dixon Recreation Center). Students may call 541-737-7556  or 541-737-9355 or visit the reception desk just inside the west entrance to make an appointment.

Appointments are made for half-hour or one-hour intervals and there is a charge for this service.

A medical referral is not necessary. However, check with your health care insurance provider for coverage requirements. If you need to cancel or reschedule your appointment, please call in advance. All missed appointments will be charged.


In China, acupuncture is used in a very broad range of disorders. In the USA, it is used in a more limited way, often in conjunction with the other medical resources available here. Conditions that are commonly treated are the following (see right):

Contraindications and side effects

Acupuncture is contraindicated in people with severe bleeding disorders. In case of severe trauma or life threatening medical disorders, treatment by biomedical providers is most appropriate. Side effects from acupuncture are very rare, potentially including the following:

  • minor pain or bruising
  • fainting
  • needle breakage
  • lung puncture

Here at SHS we have never had a serious injury result from acupuncture treatment.

Patients with bleeding disorders, pacemakers, or pregnancy should inform the acupuncturist prior to treatment.

Chronic and acute pain

Low back pain

Neck pain

Arthritic & rheumatic pain


Muscular spasm



Neurologic rehabilitation

Carpal tunnel syndrome

Trigeminal neuralgia

Facial paralysis/Bell's palsy

Peripheral neuropathies

Stroke rehabilitation

Abdominal conditions

Gastro-intestinal disorders

PMS (pre-menstrual syndrome)

Respiratory diseases



Psycho-physical conditions


Moderate depression

Substance use disorders