May 22, 2009 at 11:07 pm

Pat, I join in in stating condolences for the loss of your sister.

Regarding the acupuncture, I have never tried it, so I cannot address this personally. Also it is important to say that no one truly yet understands what causes GBS/CIDP and that there likely are several causes–differences in different people. Having said this, it may be important to point out differences in surgery and accupuncture. I have heard and read that people are concerned about people having a risk of GBS/CIDP after surgery because in surgery the cutting process cuts through nerves and exposes parts of the myelin sheath that otherwise would be nicely wrapped up around nerves and separated from the blood and immune system. This makes some sense to me–that “susceptible” people might have a strong immune response to these normally protected “antigens” that then leads to further immune damage at other places. Acupuncture uses really tiny needle in (as I understand it) carefully selected places so there are a whole lot less risk of the damaging nerves as the skinny flexible needles tend to push tough nerves out of the way (whereas scapels just cut through). There is a difference. I cannot address whether acupuncture works or even if it is safe, but maybe thinking about this will help emphasize the differences in this and surgery and why acupuncture is likely to be a lot safer than surgery.
WithHope for a cure of these diseases and an understanding as to what causes them so they can be prevented.