Acupuncture For Tarlov Cyst

Written by: DrTonyWillcox | Apr 10, 2013

Cyst Pain

Acupuncture is a form of holistic medicine with its roots in ancient Asian health care. Practitioners use small, sterilized needles to stimulate blockages in energy flow believed to cause health problems. Acupuncture is a popular approach to conditions such as Acupuncture For Tarlov Cyst, ,headaches and pain in the lower back. This natural approach may also help to relieve pain associated with fluid-filled Tarlov cysts that develop at the end of the spine. Check with your physician before using any natural approach to health care.

Cyst Pain

Dr. Tony Willcox giving a lecture at the Atlantic Institute of Oriental Medicine in Ft. Lauderdale

Professional acupuncturists use tiny hair-thin needles to restore the flow of energy in your body. reports that practitioners use acupuncture to reduce headaches, side effects of chemotherapy, lower back pain, and menstrual cramping. When performed by a professional acupuncturist, side effects of the treatment are rare but can include irritation at the site of needle insertion, infection, and injury to internal organs if a needle placement is too deep within your skin. According to, acupuncture’s effectiveness may be a matter of believing in its ability to relieve pain.

Tarlov cysts are most common in the sacral area, or base of your spine. These fluid-filled cysts contain sensitive nerve fibers that can cause significant pain, but some cause no discomfort. According to the American Association of Neurological Surgeons, the cause of Tarlov cysts is unknown, but some believe they develop after trauma to the lower back. Symptoms of a Tarlov cyst include pain in the sacral area, problems sitting for long periods, changes in sensation and alterations of bowel and bladder habits.

Proponents of acupuncture appear to find relief from the pain of Tarlov cysts after the procedure. According to a survey administered in 2003 by the Tarlov Cyst Association, 36 percent of individuals living with Tarlov cyst pain reported less pain after acupuncture treatment. Research on acupuncture for lower back pain appears to support the use of this approach; however, no research supports a direct association between acupuncture and Tarlov cyst pain.

For most people, Tarlov cysts don’t cause considerable discomfort and require no medical intervention. But if a Tarlov cyst causes pain, numbness, or changes in bowel or bladder function, surgical draining of the fluid might relieve pressure on the nerves. The administration of steroid medications may also reduce inflammation and pain. If a cyst becomes large, it can cause erosion of the end of your spine, bringing additional pain. Unfortunately, in limited cases, Tarlov cysts return after surgical removal.


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