Acupuncture with Lisa Mae
I bring together Japanese Meridian Acupuncture, Acupuncture Physical Medicine (APM), Trigger point and dry needling techniques, myofascial release work and acupuncture for all types of injury, chronic pain, chronic fatigue, and stress disorders.
Using skills forged in both the principles of Japanese Meridian Energetics and modern Western Osteopathic Trigger Point and Pain Science research, I bring nearly 20 years of experience, compassion and hands-on body wisdom to your treatment. You will leave the clinic feeling seen, heard, and most importantly, different than you arrived.
Background and Education
In 1997 I was severely injured after a horseback riding accident that left me in crippling pain with partial loss of the use of my left arm for the better part of two years. I was 23 years old and too terrified to have the spinal fusion surgery they suggested, basically abandoned by the medical system, and relegated to “palliative care and chronic pain management” for the duration of my life by several of the top spinal surgeons in New York City. To my great good fortune, someone suggested I try acupuncture. I dragged myself, my partially useless arm and my morphine patch to Dr. Mark Seem, and my life path was completely different after that choice. Soon after I began experiencing slow, incremental relief, and applied to Tri-State College of Acupuncture within that same year, beginning my journey to bring to people in pain of all kinds the same compassion, hope and skill that was applied to my broken body and spirit.
I studied for many years with master practitioners Dr. Mark Seem, Arya Nielsen, Margaret Rita McMeekin, and Kiiko Matsumoto at the Tri-State College of Acupuncture in New York City beginning in 1997. I incorporate these unique and modern styles of Japanese Meridian Acupuncture and myofascial release of soft-tissue constrictions into a unique system of Acupuncture called Acupuncture Physical Medicine, a compassionate and effective way of treating multitudes of injuries, disorders, and illnesses.
Since 2000, I have been a Licensed Acupuncturist in Oregon with a Master’s Degree in Acupuncture Physical Medicine as well as over 20 years of study in Japanese Acupunture, and I bring this wealth of teaching and extensive knowledge of musculo-skeletal disorders, physiological disharmonies, viscero-somatic problems, stress management and chronic pain of any origin to anyone seeking relief.
What is Acupuncture Physical Medicine (APM)?
This technique is a modern approach to classical meridian acupuncture that was developed by Dr. Mark Seem, Ph.D, L.Ac., over the course of twenty-plus years at Tri-State College of Acupuncture in New York City, a school which he founded and directed. Well known internationally for his many books on the subject, his thorough research, and extraordinary pioneering style of acupuncture, Dr. Seem drew from Classical (rather than Traditional) Chinese acupuncture, Japanese Meridian theory, European and French styles, as well as modern principles of Osteopathy and Physical Medicine in his teaching and protocols. These protocols involve the stimulation of specific body points by insertion and manipulation of fine needles along meridian pathways in the body, like a road map. There are many ancient points empirically proven effective in treatment of specific disorders, as well and many modern points and techniques effective for myofascial release, also called trigger point therapy.
The most common style of acupuncture practiced here in Oregon, as well as in most of North America today, is known as Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM). This is a newer form of acupuncture developed in modern, post-Maoist China which involves needles, pattern diagnosis based on pulse and tongue, and herbal therapies, used according to diagnostic principles of TCM internal medicine. While I do utilize some of these traditional therapies and diagnostics, they are not my main tools in the clinic.
In the Clinic with me
As a student and apprentice of both Dr. Mark Seem and Margaret McMeekin for many years, my style of treatment draws from the best of their teaching and mentorship, as well as Kiiko Matsumoto's Japanese Meridian energetics and modern Western Physical Medicine and Osteopathy, and results in a hands-on physical practice focused on each patient’s unique holding pattern in their body. The aim is a conversation with you and your unique expression and experience of your body, and an evaluation and treatment based on your actual lived experience of your illness, injury or distress that day.
In this approach, you are evaluated and treatment is begun right on the table, with hands-on, massage-style communication and palpation established immediately that is extremely unique and often profound. In this exceptional physical clinical encounter, years of chronic constrictions and disharmonies can yield in relatively few sessions, and you can make far greater and more rapid strides in your other complimentary healthcare goals. The basis for all of my treatments lies in my foundational belief that as a team, we treat what we find on the table that day, together. My approach is deeply trauma-informed, modern, personal, and relaxed, and my attitude toward you and your health is open and compassionate. I try to allow my natural tendency to be funny and welcoming to come through, and for my style of acupuncture to meet you right where you are, immediately helping you feel relaxed and at ease.
What is my specialty?
You might say that I am a bit of a pain specialist. That sounds intimidating due to my tools of choice, but any disorder or disharmony that shows even the slightest sign of improvement, or even the slightest exacerbation from acupuncture can be more quickly resolved with acupuncture. My style of acupuncture is well suited for many chronic or complex disorders that often fall outside the mainstream medical care approaches—I love a challenge in the pain department. This includes but certainly is not limited to chronic pain, injuries, fatigue, stress/ post trauma disorders, head injuries/concussions and complementing the care of things like reflux/heartburn, many GI disorders, headaches, TMJ, Carpal tunnel and repetitive strain injuries. In other words, just about everything. Additionally, acupuncture’s effect on stress management, PTSD and trauma is immeasurable. I also treat pre-teen and teen-aged athletes with ease and style; getting them on-board with acupuncture can be tricky and I am told I'm pretty good at it. I also have a robust referral network, if I happen to not be the practitioner that can help you most, and I am not afraid to use it. I often work in concert with Physical Therapists, Occupational Therapists and mental health counselors to make the wisest possible treatment plan for you.
Your treatment will often not be limited to Acupuncture, as I often work with therapeutic and restorative exercises, mechanics of yoga, and other ergonomic and structural changes in the body at the same time.
What Does Acupuncture Physical Medicine or Japanese Meridian Acupuncture Treat?
Chronic pain and Athletic injuries
This is the primary advantage of my style of Acupuncture Physical Medicine, and comprises the bulk of my work with patients. More than any other system of bodywork or acupuncture, this style can not only work to relieve pain, but help to re-pattern and eliminate it altogether. Whether from an injury sustained in sports, athletics, or an accident, or from working, lifting or just playing, this system can help you. Also useful preparing for and recovering from surgeries, I help people shorten their recovery time and get back to doing what they love.
Stress, Post-traumatic Disharmony, and Fatigue
Along with other complementary therapies like yoga, meditation, bio-feedback and counseling, Acupuncture can also help you learn to react to stress with less pain and discomfort, prodding more normal functioning of the body’s already intelligent systems. If you have sustained emotional or physical abuses, car accidents, concussions, or other extreme traumas, you often need to release physical straitjackets that our body has created to protect against further trauma and pain. Combined with proper psychological treatment, many people are able to move beyond these repetitive patterns.
TMJ and Headaches
Working with the physicality of the head and jaw, Acupuncture can greatly reduce the pain and discomfort of TMJ disorders in relatively few treatments. It is also quite effective in treatment of chronic headaches and their associated symptoms.
Carpal tunnel and Other Repetitive Strain Injuries
Habitual overuse of small or large sets of muscles, as with computer users, musicians, painters, gardeners, and many other repetitive professions or hobbies, can create pain patterns and strains in hands arms, wrists, necks, and just about any other location you can dream up. Acupuncture rapidly addresses the muscular and energetic components of these issues before they become serious, often helping patients avoid surgery.