WINDHOEK- A Chinese doctor who worked for two years at the Katutura State Hospital’s acupuncture department saw the need to venture into the private sector because of the demand for the service.
Doctor Peng Wang worked as a volunteer in the acupuncture department at the hospital between 2014 and 2016, as part of bilateral agreements between the Namibian and Chinese governments.
“Every day I was busy during that time. I saw at least 30 patients every day. I saw a lot of patients suffering from different diseases, including internal diseases. I saw that Namibians believe in acupuncture treatment,” Wang told New Era.
Still, not too many Namibians really know about acupuncture and tuina unless they are referred to the hospital, Wang observed. “When they get the treatment they are amazed by its effectiveness,” he added.
When his contract came to an end, he thought it would be good to offer the services to the general population and after completing paper works, he started practicing in March this year – specialising in acupuncture and tuina treatment.
Originating from China, acupuncture and tuina, which is similar to massage, are used in different parts of the world to treat a variety of pains including chronic problems and some internal diseases.
Wang explained that acupuncture does not have side effects because it is outside treatment. More scientists are devoting time to research on the effectiveness of acupuncture and it is proved to be effective, Wang explained.
He has so far attended to patients with lower back pains, lumbar disc herniation, stiff neck, shoulder problems, headache, digestion problems, menstruation pain, skin disorders and depression because of the pressure from work and daily life.
The youngest patient he treated is a 14-years-old who complained of pimples on the face, he added. Babies are not suitable for acupuncture treatment and the ideal age for a person seeking this treatment is 18 years, Wang explained.
Depending on the condition, patients can attend up to seven sessions.
“For patients with lower back pain, stiff neck and depression, we need several sessions. I always incorporate acupuncture and manipulation (tuina) together. If a patient is complaining of muscle pains, the main function of acupuncture is to stop the pain for the acute but in tuina is to massage to make the muscles function,” Wang explained.
There are no strict dietary requirements with acupuncture and patients are discouraged from stopping their allopathic medicines. Instead, acupuncture should be used in addition with allopathic medicines for patients who are on lifelong treatment, Wang explained.
“Every treatment has its own benefits and disadvantages, we must use traditional and western medicines together to get good results. That is science,” added Wang.