Leah proudly announces her move to Stanford Healthcare and is exclusively seeing Qualcomm employees who want Acupuncture services at the Qualcomm Health Center at 10155 Pacific Heights Road, San Diego, CA.

Acupuncture Helps Ease Breast Cancer Treatment Symptoms, Study Says

breast cancerDr. Ting Bao is getting amazing results from his study on whether or not acupuncture can help ease the nausea, pain, and discomfort associated with breast cancer treatment. His results are impressive. As if having breast cancer were not horrific enough, now the treatment is causing symptoms that rival the anxiety of the cancer. Most women being treated for early stage breast cancer experience hot flashes, depression, and all over body pain in the muscles and joints. Out of the frying pan and into the fire!

A CNN report examined whether or not acupuncture could help ease these tortuous symptoms of the cancer treatment. As a way to dig into Dr. Bao’s study, CNN follows Titi Ariyo, a women suffering from hot flashes and pain. She said, “I had joint pain, my knees and my ankles and my entire body just hurt.” In addition to this, she couldn’t sleep and was sinking further and further into sadness and depression. The acupuncture eased the symptoms of her breast cancer treatment.

What Breast Cancer treatment symptoms is acupuncture great at easing?

  • Pain
  • Nausea
  • hot flashes
  • Depression

What is better is that although Dr. Bao saw improvement with both the placebo and the real acupuncture. He saw significant reduction in the symptoms with the real deal. The end result is that he looks toward a time when acupuncture and allopathic medicine work together harmoniously to improve the the patients quality of life and outcomes.

This is just what is going on with Leah and her connection to the UCSD Center for Integrative Medicine. Here, practitioners of a variety of types of alternative and Eastern medicine come together for the benefit of the patient. For a full article detailing Leah’s connection to the, click here.

What is clear from Dr. Bao’s research is that acupuncture can and does work very with Western Medicine, even with something as severe as breasts cancer treatment.


Getting To The Bottom of Traditional Chinese Medicine: Pernicious Influences

pernicious influencesPernicious Influences….I love that phrase, for some reason. You know what? I have been writing this blog about Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) and acupuncture for a long time. In fact, I write more than one blog on acupuncture and I never had heard this phrase. I mean, I had heard words thrown around in my therapy like “damp” and “hot” but I had no clue what they meant other than what they seem like they mean. However, when a practitioner of TCM discusses a certain issue occurring because of heat or dampness, they are talking about something different, they are talking about the 6 pernicious influences.

In TCM, the basis of health is the movement of your life energy, Qi (pronounced Chee). Within this tradition, they look for the yin/yang balance. When Qi becomes blocked and slowed, you see disorder and illness. Your yin/yang energy is out of harmony and unbalanced. What causes these blockages and disharmony are the pernicious influences.

What are the 6 pernicious influences?

  1. Cold– it takes your energy and makes your movements difficult. External cold causes fever (ironically), chills, and aches. If cold becomes internal people are tired, pale, exhausted and sleep a lot.
  2. Heat – heat disorders create a situation in a person that resembles the way a person looks after a workout. They are flushed, have a lot of energy, a dry mouth, and are talkative. When internal, heat can cause boils, abscesses, and delirium.
  3. Dampness – externally, you can have wide pain, congestion, or stomach upset. Internally, the marker of dampness is mucous.
  4. Dryness – this pernicious influence usually accompanies heat. But think of dry, cracked, red skin on the outside. If internal, you may see asthma, or a dry, hacking cough.
  5. Damp Heat – Also called summer heat, or swamp – this is always an internal one of the pernicious influences. It is characterized by fever and total exhaustion
  6. Wind – If wind attacks the body externally, you will see skin issues, tics, twitches. Internally, you may see a condition as mild as dizziness or as serious as seizures.

It is not necessary to understand TCM when you go to see Leah…but it is so dang interesting. And now you will know what she is talking about when she discusses dampness. You will know it is one of those pernicious influences.

Your Guide to Choosing an Acupuncture Provider

choosing an acupuncture providerRight here, on this website is a page called “Choosing an Acupuncturist” In it, Leah tells you about the different types of acupuncture. Check it out, it is important to understand the variations and know what style speaks to you. Choosing an Acupuncture Provider is definitely about styles, but it is about so much more. Think of this more as the “Girlfriends Guide” to choosing an acupuncture provider. So, here we go.

Your Guide to Choosing an Acupuncture Provider

  • Style: Know the style of acupuncture you are seeking (by checking out our informative page) and ask possible acupuncture provider candidates about their style.
  • Insurance: Call your insurance company or hop online and find out what acupuncture providers are covered under your plan. You might be amazed that many more are covered than you think.
  • Recommendations: Get recommendations when choosing an acupuncture provider. Ask trusted family and friends.
  • Licensing: California licenses acupuncturists. Find out here if the provider you are looking at is licensed properly.
  • Reputation: Read testimonials and any blogs found on their website. Ask how long they have been practicing. Do some legwork and investigate how the community views them.
  • Location, location, location: Are they convenient? Just because there is a great acupuncturist doesn’t mean you should subject yourself to an hour and a half drive. When choosing an acupuncture provider, make sure you won’t be bitter with the drive.
  • Meet your acupuncturist: See if you can ask a couple questions about the nature of your ailment. How many appointments will it require? How often? You also will get a sense of their energy, if I may get all metaphysical with you. It is important to feel comfortable and confident.

When choosing your acupuncture provider, don’t just go to the guy next door (although they may be great). Do some research and get an acupuncturist who you resonate with on many levels.

What is so Special About Acupressure Massage

acupressure massageI just had a massage with my daughter. It was one of our Christmas presents to each other. It was an hour of sheer bliss at one of the local strip mall establishments. My daughter and I had never been there so we got a discount. However, as great as it was, it doesn’t hold a candle to the relaxation you get with Leah and her acupressure massage.

Acupressure Massage vs. Strip Mall Massage

There is 180 degrees difference and all I can do to show the contrast is describe them. So without acupressure massage, the massage is standard. I didn’t ask for any deep tissue or hot rocks. It was good and relaxing, but your normal massage. There were heated tables. Yet, the ambient temperature was too cold so every time a part of my body were outside the blanket, I would get a bit chilled. Beyond that, it was what everyone would expect in a massage. She even really got into my shoulder blades good.

Onto acupressure massage. Because as good as a regular massage is, Leah beats it with her acupressure massage, hands down. You start out with your usual acupuncture for whatever ails you. *Blow through a couple of the other blogs here to read about your specific issues.* As she removes the wee needles, she massages in a way that reinforce the needles she has just place. An acupressure massage focuses on more specific points than an entire muscle group. The relaxation is intense. It is like you can almost feel the Qi (life energy) flowing freely. Oh…and the temperature is always perfect.

It is an entirely different experience from your standard massage. Both are great. I prefer Leah’s. Try an acupressure massage today, as part of your acupuncture treatment. Finally, a “treatment” that is really a “treat”!

The Gift of Acupuncture : Give the Healing Gift

the gift of acupunctureChristmas is upon us and things are getting frantic. You have to give gifts to your colleagues, your kids, your secret Santa. You don’t have any witty gifts. All your gifts scream, “boring” or “middle age.” I feel your pain….the struggle is real. I went to a company party that had a “white elephant” gift. Is it a real white elephant gift? How can I look fun and interesting and with it in one small gift? The answer is the gift of acupuncture.

The great thing about acupuncture is that it works for acute problems like the cold, that need immediate and serious attention to more chronic conditions such as arthritis or insomnia that require long term care. Even with these more chronic conditions, a person can get some benefit and relief from the gift of acupuncture in one sitting. What could be a more incredible hipster gift than the gift of acupuncture?

How do I give the gift of acupuncture?

Simple, You contact Leah and pay for a session…or a series of sessions for the recipient of the gift of acupuncture. Then, you let your bestie enjoy Leah’s ministrations.

What does a the gift of acupuncture include?

  • Acupuncture is a type of Traditional Chinese Medicine where tiny needles are placed at specific energy points, called meridians, in order to keep your vital energy flowing freely. So….it includes Leah placing these wee needles at the correct places for the right amount of time
  • Assessment – I cannot speak more highly of the total body assessment from Leah. She decides if acupuncture is enough or whether you need a Chinese herbal supplement for your condition.
  • Massage is vital to the gift of acupuncture with Leah. You will get a head to toe massage, focusing on acupressure points to enhance he acupuncture.

The best part of the gift of acupuncture is that it is just as sweet if you give it for Christmas or a birthday. It may be the most sweet to give as an after holidays rehab. Hint hint….is anyone listening?


Leah Davida Krecu at UCSD Center For Integrative Medicine

I have been going to see Leah for some time for various conditions. Just pour through this blog a bit and you will find out a great deal about my health and wellness. I am always amazed at Leah’s level of knowledge and her acupuncture skills. She is quite the professional. What I didn’t realize was that our very own Leah Davida Krecu is one of the associated acupuncturists at UCSD Center For Integrative Medicine.

I always knew that she was associated with UCSD in some capacity but it was only when I started asking questions and doing some research that I found out how very special UCSD Center For Integrative Medicine really is. You have to check them out. Here is the link….UCSD Center For Integrative Medicine. The center isn’t located in one place, they have practitioners spread out around the campus of UCSD hospitals. Leah sees patients in their clinic and combines their Western care with Traditional Chinese Medicine. The UCSD Center For Integrative Medicine employs a motto of “whole-person wellness”. I  just love that, as you probably do too. Because, let’s face it, we are whole people. When we are sick, we need many parts of us treated. Often we languish in our illness precisely because we are ignoring a significant aspect of our person. The UCSD Center For Integrative Medicine treats the “physical, as well as lifestyle, emotional, psychological and spiritual needs” of their patients.

Leah Davida Krecu is part of the UCSD Center for Integrative Medicine Team!

Although I adore going to Leah for so many reasons, beginning with the efficacy of her treatments all the way to her thorough dedication to my wellness, and her incredibly massage, I had no idea how respected she was within the acupuncture community and the larger medical community. When you are choosing your acupuncturist, do some research. When you check out Leah Davida Krecu, you will find exactly what you seek.

Acupuncture for Warts: Studies Say, “It Works!”

acupuncture for wartsIf you are a person who gets warts easily, like me, you are willing to try anything. I have found a new treatment that just might prove the trick. That treatment is acupuncture for warts. What you may or may not know is that all warts are caused by a virus called Human Papillomavirus (HPV). You may also not know that there are a variety of types of warts. One nasty one, in particular, has shown fabulous results when using acupuncture for warts.

What are the type of Warts? Which one responds best to Acupuncture for Warts?

  • Common Warts: These are, notably, the most common. They have a grainy, cauliflower-like, appearance and a rounded top.
  • Plantar Warts: These warts are found on the bottom of the foot. They are very painful and hart to treat because you body grows a thick callous on top of them.
  • Flat Warts: These are the ones that respond fabulously to acupuncture for warts, although you can get relief from any wart with acupuncture for warts, these respond lovely and immediately to treatment. They are small and flat and usually occur on the upper thighs and arms. They are often found in clusters of up to a hundred or more.
  • Periungal Warts: These occur around the fingernail or toenail bed and can effect nail growth.

All warts can be treated successfully with acupuncture, however, studies show flat warts are treated REALLY well. In fact, flat warts are treated better with acupuncture than with the ointment your doctor is bound to give you. In a study 53% of those treated with acupuncture for warts remained wart free after six months. This is pretty great considering western medicine struggles to treat these little buggers.

Next time you are suffering from stubborn warts, stop your suffering and go get an acupuncture for warts treatment. You will be happy you did.

Acupuncture Facelift: What is it really like?

acupuncture faceliftYou have seen blogs about the acupuncture facelift here before. I thought I knew how they were done and their efficacy. However, my knowledge wasn’t personal. I always relied upon the eyewitness account of others. This is different. This time, I went under the needle and started the acupuncture facelift process.

What happens during an acupuncture facelift?

Well I can tell you that if you are used to acupuncture, you won’t be disappointed. It includes some of the same procedures that we are all used to. You acupuncturist will place tiny needles at specific points, called meridians, with the goal to get your energy flowing properly. I went to see Leah and she placed needles in points to enhance my skin quality and elasticity. It was as I was used to. However, she did something I didn’t expect. She turned on a brighter light and identified specific wrinkles that were bothering me. She threaded a needle along the wrinkle line to break up the scar tissue creating the wrinkle. Don’t worry, it didn’t hurt a bit. It felt a bit uplifting, if you must know. These were left in for a time, during which she did her usual and amazing acupressure massage.

Did the acupuncture facelift work?

That is the big question. First..yes you must wait…an acupuncture facelift is not completed in one sitting. It is done over a course of sessions. How many, will depend upon each person, their needs, and skin. Everyone is different. However, I have to say, I immediately noticed a softening in the lines that she perked up. I can’t wait to go back. Over the course of a few sessions, I will come back and write another update on the long term results.

I know I am not supposed to worry about these wrinkles, but an acupuncture facelift was just too tempting to pass up!

Acupuncture for the ear: How did it work? Pt. 2

acupuncture for the earTwo weeks ago, we looked at acupuncture for the ear. I was having this terrible problem. You see, normally in September and October, in Southern California, it is hot. In fact, those are the hottest two months of the year. September is the worst. This year, has been different. There have been a series of tropical storms that have lowered the thermometer and brought large doses of desperately needed rain. The problem is that every time one of those storms rears its head, mine closes up. The pressure in my ears ranges from to the point where I  have a hard time hearing to mild irritation and a sense of ringing in the ears. I decided to put Leah to the test, I am sure she loves that…and tried acupuncture for the ear. On a side note, I also tried out a round of an acupuncture face lift…..hang on until later on this month for the incredible post about the results.

Back to acupuncture for the ear and how it worked out. Immediately after the treatment, I could feel the entire length of my Eustachian tubes (those are the tubes that lead from your middle ears to the back of your throat, they help equalize pressure in your ears). It was like they were lit up and open. Gradually, post acupuncture for the ear, that sensation faded but a sense of openness remained.

Well, my acupuncture for the ear got immediately tested. Of course, the rain began this weekend. However, the best part was that I didn’t even realize it was going to happen. Normally, I would feel so much pressure, prior to a storm, it would be painful. This time, with acupuncture to the ear, I felt no alteration, no discomfort. As with most Traditional Chinese Medicine, one treatment is rarely going to cure a significant issue. However, I can say that I felt dramatic change with one treatment. If it comes back, I will request those same wee needles be inserted again. Finally, something non-pharmaceutical, that works!

Acupuncture for the Ear: Looking toward El Niño

Acupuncture for the EarThis weather in Southern California has got me all topsy-turvy. I mean do we really expect it to go from 100 degrees and sunny one day to pouring rain and lightening the next? And…In September? Every time we make a shift in the weather where a rain front comes in, my ears seem to get pressurized. It is become crazy and what is worse, El Niño is promised. All I can imagine are storm fronts pressurizing and depressurizing the unstable air and my poor ears popping like mad. I really need some acupuncture for the ear.

Of course there are thousands of things that could cause the sensation of clogged and/or popping ears. However, the ones that seem to get the most traction with me come in two varieties:

Acupuncture for the ear: Congestion Relief

Ear congestion can be caused from fluid build up in the ear. This can be caused by colds or flu. As well, allergies can just make those ears feel clogged when really the lining is inflamed. Traditional Chinese Medicine is based upon the flow of energy, called Qi (pronounced Chee). There are many energy paths around the ear. Thus Acupuncture for the ear for congestion works exceptionally well to open the ear.

Acupuncture for the ear: Relieving Ear Pressure

This type of acupuncture uses different meridian points near the entrance to your ear canal to “pop” your ears. Using San Jiao 21, Small Intestine 19 and Gallbladder 2 you can get the pressure relief you desire, sans gum. Over the course of treatments you can lessen your sensitivity to those pressure changes, brought on by pesky weather systems, like El Niño.

So, looking ahead, El Niño has the potential to wreck havoc upon my ears, if I let it. Lucky for me I am going to go try out acupuncture for the ear. Our next blog post will be on the results of the treatment. Stay tuned!