Nothing speaks louder than personal experience so I have asked a few of my clients to share their experiences of treatment with you to illustrate what Chinese medicine can do in the right hands. I hope that in sharing these personal stories it will help you to develop a better feel for the treatment process, the impact that this profound system of medicine can have on your health and the style and nature of my practice.
"In 2009 the odd bouts of hay fever of previous years escalated, the usual nasal sprays and tablets were ineffective, from April through to the end of Autumn I suffered with itchy eyes, sneezing and a runny nose. The summer was ruined, to the point where I didn’t really want to be outside.
In February 2010, I was determined not to go through another year like 2009, to the point where a steroid injection was a serious option. By chance I stumbled upon a leaflet which described the treatments Edmond offered, It was local, so I thought I had nothing to lose. My first appointment was in April 2010, I am not sure what I expected but Edmond's scientific, thoughtful, considered approach to diagnosis was a surprise. Within 5 visits the mixture of acupuncture and herbs had a calming effect, my hay fever was milder and increasingly manageable. Treatment proceeded through the summer and reached a point where I was suffering almost no effects, my last treatment was in August.
I will restart treatment in February 2011 and I anticipate being free of hay fever symptoms throughout the spring and summer.
It is rare that you find something that actually works, this does and I wouldn't hesitate to recommend Edmond."
"I had severe back pain and sciatic pain down my leg lasting for over 3 years after a very minor sporting injury. As a result my quality of life was severely affected. I had prolonged periods off work and before trying acupuncture I had: chiropractor treatment, traction, anti-inflammatory drugs, X-ray, physiotherapy, an MRI scan, 2 epidural injections and a long period of treatment from an osteopath. Despite this range of treatments my back pain was still persisting and I was deeply worried by the fact that I was getting conflicting diagnoses of the root cause of the problem from different specialists.
It took quite few weekly sessions of acupuncture with Edmond before starting to get results but I am totally convinced that the acupuncture treatment and simple exercises that he provided have fixed the problem.
The needles seemed to give him a really accurate method of identifying my problem areas. He seemed to be able to work through each muscle, between discs and vertebrae and find out what nerves where affected. All the scans, prodding and poking of the other approaches from other treatments were nowhere near as focused.
I still have little way to go before returning to full strength but I am able to pretty much do everything I used to do prior to the injury. I am very grateful to Edmond for his treatment. Putting it simply - it worked."
"Having suffered with re-occurring chronic prostatitis for 18 months and been thorough various cycles of antibiotics, which only ever provided short term improvement, I decided a different approach was required.
Having looked up the potential of Chinese medicine on the web, I contacted a number of practitoners to gain there insight and approach to the condition. I was extremely impressed with Edmond's knowledge, professionalism and personal attentiveness and decided to commit to a program of treatment with him for the condition.
Following an individual consultation Edmond pulled together for me a program which combined acupuncture treatment and tailored herbs, which he constantly reviewed over the period of treatment depending on feedback and changes in the state of the condition.
I am pleased to say that I have now been symptom free for almost 5 months - the longest I have gone without a problem since I was first diagnosed.
What I would say is do not expect a quick fix - the treatment does not work like western medicine in that it takes time to impact and be prepared for a few ups and downs along the way. I worked with Edmond for almost 6 months to get the condition under control on a sustained basis. patience, perseverance and faith in Edmond are key components as much as the treatment.
Throughout this period I found Edmond to be extremely professional, conscientious and flexible and I would not hesitate to recommend his services."
"I went to Edmond with chronic lower back pain and sciatica caused by a disc prolapse diagnosed a few years ago. Having a job where I need to sit all day long has not helped matters.
Edmond took my medical history, spent time understanding me and my issues and started to treat me for a number of other complaints as well that I would not have thought was possible to be treated by acupuncture or Chinese herbal medicine.
Three months on I am very happy with the results:
1. My chronic back ache is a thing of the past (treated with acupuncture and qigong exercises)
2. I am clear of the psoriasis that kept flaring up as soon as the steroid creams were discontinued (treated with Chinese herbs, creams and acupuncture)
3. My tinnitus and other ear complaints that my GP would not touch cleared up (treated with Chinese herbs)
4. My chronic irritable bowel syndrome subsided a lot as an unexpected and pleasant side effect of taking the herbs (I think I’ll go back to Edmond with this as my major complaint in the very near future, see what he can do with 30 years of chronic IBS… )
Edmond is very knowledgeable about acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine and takes great care in setting up his treatment plan. He is comfortable with Western medical concepts as well as with the Chinese concepts and explains what he is doing and why, if you are interested, but does not evangelise or try to convert you to the Chinese way of thinking, if you are not. You do not need to believe in the qi or the Chinese philosophy for his treatment to work!
I can’t wait for his Qigong classes to start up. I’ll be there like a shot."
Back Pain, Psoriasis & Tinnitus
"In December 2008 I was unfortunate enough to catch the annual winter ‘bug’ that had effected many people at school and members of my family. I recovered after a few days and thought that would be the end of it. However, in January 2009 I started to experience the same symptoms, lack of energy, stomach cramps, no appetite and remained in bed for the next few days. With bed rest, drinking plenty of fluids and managing to eat simple easy digestible foods not making any improvements, I decided that I needed to try and get on with my life and just hope that it would go away. Things got from bad to worse when I experienced an awful head-rush that left me unable to see for what seemed like a lifetime. The whole experience of feeling, quite literally, blind, was terrifying, as I was conscience through the whole ‘episode’ and hence, I experienced my first panic attack. My family, who were used to a chirpy, healthy 16 year old girl, called the paramedics who told me that I should book an emergency appointment with my GP. The next day, the doctors told me that the reason I had this head-rush was probably because I had not been eating much due to having a stomach ache. Whilst they were sympathetic, I left the surgery feeling scared, hopeless and ill.
This was how I felt for the next 9 months. Everything was a struggle for me. Since having the ‘black out’ I was experiencing regular panic attacks, even at home, where there was nothing to be scared about. The worst thing for me was having to eat. I had no appetite, but I had no desire to be skinny at all (I am 5ft 10 and have always been slim) but I dropped from 8.5 stone to 7 stone very quickly. Previously, my friends would envy me at the amount that I could eat and it wouldn’t show. Also, food has always been an important thing in my family, and now I felt that I couldn’t even enjoy a family meal. I felt so lost. It was a viscous circle, the more I ate, the more my stomach hurt, the more I got terrified of being sick because of the constant ache in my stomach. Because of this, the panic attacks became more frequent and I tried to eat as little as I could, this in turn added to my lack of energy and nutrition.
The months would go by, I would go to the doctors, they would prescribe me more anti-acids or digestive aids but nothing worked. I was sent to a Gasterenterologist and he told me to take Gaviscone. I felt like no one was taking me seriously. I couldn’t even manage to go into my local town, see relatives, go to the cinema or have coffee with friends without thinking that I would be sick or have a panic attack. I became so miserable, my whole personality changed and I felt that I was becoming such a burden to my family. 2009 so far had been a pretty awful year.
Then in September 2009, my Dad found an acupuncturist in my home town and suggested that we go for alternative treatment. I was willing to try anything! We attended the first session and had an in depth discussion about what had been happening these last few months. Because of this in depth discussion, Edmond and I were able to piece together what had caused this ‘downward spiral’ and come up with an effective course of treatment. What was most important to me was the fact that Edmond actually seemed to care about what I had been through and didn’t dismiss me as a (now 17) year old girl who was making a fuss about nothing. Openness is very important in acupuncture because you are then able to get the most out of it. All of this was done in a professional, confidential and comfortable way.
From September 2009 to June 2010, I would have acupuncture every week, or every other week. Not only was this helping my digestion, but I found that my panic attacks were becoming less frequent and I was able to enjoy food more. And more importantly, I was enjoying life more. I also was taking herbal supplements to help with my digestion. Admittedly, I was rather skeptical to these tiny tablets making any difference seeing as nothing had helped in the past, but they really did work! Edmond also taught me simple exercises that helped to strengthen my muscles and also ‘open up’ my spine and stomach area which would help me over time. As time went by, and as I became more comfortable and used to the needles, I would have different needles inserted for different reasons. I would also sometimes have cupping or a massage to loosen my muscles, particularly in my back, if they were tight. All these enabled me to have an effective course of treatment to see what worked best for me.
The thing about acupuncture is that it is very logical. Everything is linked and ‘makes sense’. Chinese medicine understands that every person is different and has different needs, its more sympathetic and understands that some things cannot simply just be cured with a dose of medication. Acupuncture is fantastic for problems that have been going on for a long time or that western medicine is just not able to help with. Its defiantly not a ‘hippy‘ style of treatment as there is a lot of science behind it. It is not an overnight cure it requires patience, but over a period of time, you will defiantly see the benefits.
Whilst I will have slight digestion problems for the rest of my life, acupuncture has helped me on so many levels. Not only has it helped me physically, but because I have been feeling more healthy, I have been feeling better in myself. The future is so much brighter for me and I am feeling more like my old self and making up for the two years that I had lost. Before Edmond helped me, the thought of being out by myself would have sent me into a panic attack, now I look forward to the future knowing that my health won't hold me back."
Panic Attacks & Digestive Issues
"When Edmond opened his practice in Richings Park, I decided to seek an opinion about a long standing problem which general medical attention had been unable to resolve. Knowing little about acupuncture or Chinese medicine generally, I asked if he thought it could help. He was totally honest from the outset as to what (he thought) could be achieved and my particular problem necessitated a lengthy initial consultation. During this consultation I was totally comfortable with his relaxed manner and felt no sense of embarrassment or intrusion, even when the questions were of a personal nature.
I was sufficiently impressed to go ahead with the suggested combination of acupuncture and Chinese herbal tablets and, although in that instance the treatment proved lengthy and not totally successful, the results far outweighed any other tried remedies. HOWEVER - the best part - the holistic approach is such that during the course of the treatment one or two other medical problems came to light and they were dealt with alongside the main treatment. I also experienced a general feeling of wellbeing. The treatment was relaxing and painless as the acupuncture needles are so fine and expertly inserted that I was usually unaware of how many had been used.
Since then I have returned for the treatment of toothache, a cricked neck and a back strain, all of which have been dealt with instantly; in fact on one occasion I would say almost magically! One treatment required the use of moxibustion which I found not only beneficial but soothing. So as not to appear a total hypochondriac I must add that all this has taken place over a couple of years!
If you have yet to try acupuncture or any other Chinese treatment and feel a sense of unease about such methods, I would highly recommend Edmond not only for his expertise but for being able to put you at your ease. I would also like to add that I found him interesting and articulate with a sense of fun (if needed!).
A very satisfied client from Iver Heath"