Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Bee Therapy?

As I was getting my weekly acupuncture treatment today, my acupuncturist, Tuan, told me about how he suffers from chronic pain in his shoulder due to several injuries to it in his younger years.  He said he had seen a few doctors, and three different doctors told him that he needed surgery on it to relieve the pain.  Even though I've been seeing him for 5 years or so, I've never known that he suffers from chronic pain because he has always seemed in good health.  Tuan told me that for many years now he has been doing bee therapy, also know as apitherapy, to help with the shoulder pain and that he only has to do it every six months or so to find relief.

Bee therapy is exactly what it sounds like...you get stung by honey bees.  Chinese medicine uses the bees to sting the patient on various acupuncture spots.  Tuan says that bee venom has been used since ancient times, going back to the Egyptians.  He uses it on himself, my other acupuncturist, and has had other patients that have found relief with this practice.  The bee venom causes the body's immune system to react strongly, which is what helps patients find relief.

Tuan told me that he just performed a treatment on my other acupuncturist, Thuc Dan, this past Saturday.  He treated her with only five stings, since she is much more sensitive and reacts more than he does.  Tuan says that since everyone's body reacts differently, people will have varying results and require treatments at different rates.  After speaking with Thuc Dan, she told me that after the treatments she feels like she has the flu for a couple of days, with the day after the treatment being the worst.  To feel a bit better, she took some anti-histamine, which helped to relieve some of the symptoms she was suffering from.

This isn't the first time Tuan has told me about bee therapy.  He mentioned it a few years ago when he told me about a patient of his that suffered from multiple sclerosis.  He had been treating her for years and she had found great relief with the treatments.

So, how crazy is this sounding to you?  If you are a regular, “normal” person, you probably think it sounds nuts.  And it sounds crazy to me too...but it also seems like something that I may be open to.  Suffering on a daily basis sucks, plain and simple.  If I could find something that would relieve my pain on a temporary basis...even if it sounds completely nutty...well, why not try it at least once?

Dear Readers...Have I lost it completely?  Or do you think this may have some substance?


  1. Tried and true for centuries? dating back to ancient times? I don't think that's too far fetched really. Indians used to chew on the bark of a willow tree and today we have aspirin.And, we use the venom from the box jelly fish (Botox) for migraine relief. So, yeah...not too crazy if you ask me. I say go for it! TheHubs has tried acupuncture but did not get any relief for his pain. I wish he had....good luck!

    Jamie Dement (LadyJai)
    Caring for My Veteran
    Be Positive in Life and Writing

  2. I'm glad at least one person doesn't think I'm nuts! I call that a win :) In all seriousness, I'm sorry acupuncture didn't work for your husband. It took me four treatments before I noticed a difference. I'm glad I stuck with it...pun intended :)