Countdown to Graduation - 3 Weeks

Patient care is winding down here at the NUHS Chicago Clinic for me. I am slowly turning over all my patients to ninth trimester interns as I finish with the last of my numbers for graduation. It is a bittersweet moment with a lot of the patients because we have been working together for the last six months. Although the patients are sad to see us moving on, they have been super supportive and excited for all us as we move on as doctors.

Over the past few months, my favorite pastime at clinic has been learning more and more about acupuncture. It has been such an effective treatment options for many of my patients. The results I have gotten when using acupuncture for treatment nine times out of ten have way exceeded my expectations. 

Photo of ear using auricular therapy
Auricular therapy with ear seed

The newest facet of acupuncture I have been using with some of my patients is auricular therapy. Auricular therapy consists of needling specific points on or around the ear that correspond to the rest of the body. Auricular therapy is a very effective treatment for depression, fatigue, post-traumatic stress disorder, smoking cessation, facial rejuvenation, appetite suppression/weight loss, energy, and focus. For lasting results of an auricular therapy treatment, ear seeds can be placed in the patient's ear on specific pressure points. The ear seeds can be covered with a small bandage and left in the patient's ear for a few days after the treatment.

Photo of ear seed
Close up of ear seed

I have been treating a patient at the NUHS Chicago Whole Health Center for fatigue, focus, and increased energy using a lot of the acupuncture points in the ear. The patient is a student and also works two jobs. On average, the patient gets about four hours of sleep a night and her fatigue is mainly due to the stress of the her hectic schedule.

After the initial treatment, the patient has seen a significant increase in focus. Before starting treatment, she typically would doze off when attempting to study for long periods of time. Now, while studying, the patient stated she is able to maintain focus for a much longer period of time. With continued treatment, the patient has noticed increased energy levels throughout the day, decreased fatigue, and a more restful night's sleep.