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Jane, Lexington, MA

I am 75 years old. I was giving a piano lesson when quite suddenly my neck became extremely still. A short while later, my right arm and hand began to ache and it was difficult to move my fingers. I used my left and when I needed to demonstrate something to students for the rest of that afternoon. I thought probably I had been too tense when using the computer and mouse that morning. By the next day my left hand and arm were affected and the sore muscles in my leg made it difficult to walk without  limping. I felt stiff all over. I cancelled my piano performance at my students” recitals that afternoon, but otherwise carried on normally. I had no respiratory symptoms or digestive problems. The following day, my right shoulder was extremely sore after an hour of driving. That night getting into the bathtub was a big challenge and getting out was almost impossible. Any muscles in my legs or arms that I would normally have used were just not working. But during that bath, I discovered a rash on my legs. It was not itchy, just red bumps and blotches. That was when I started to wonder if there is a virus that can attack muscles. I begun to have anxieties about not being able to work again and having my whole lovely life crashing into disaster.
The next day, four days after the first symptoms, was the worst. My leg muscles would not ease me onto the toilet seat, so when I went to the bathroom, I would come crashing down onto the seat with a thud. I went up and down stairs with great effort, one foot at a time like a toddler. I could not wring out a washcloth or open a jar, and I certainly could not play the piano. I googled every disease I would ever heard of and finally found a description matching my symptoms: polymyalgia, a virus attacking muscles, and dermatomyositis, a virus attacking muscles with accompanying rash. In mainstream medicine diagnosis for these comes from muscle biopsy, and treatment is corticosteroids, perhaps for the rest of one’s life. Fortunately, the next day was my day for acupuncture with Tamie. In weekly visits for the past four years Tamie has treated me for a variety of ills, small and large, and is responsible in large part of my customary good health and energy. Tamie listened carefully to my symptoms, as she always does, and figured out the appropriate treatment. I did feel better the rest of that day, but the most astounding thing was waking up the next morning feeling normal. My muscles worked and the pain was gone ! There was such a huge difference between how incapacitated I had been and how I could now run up and down stairs, easily get in and out of the bathtub, and most of all, play the piano, which is both my profession and my avocation. This experience left me very grateful for Tamie, and very appreciative of how well muscles usually work. Why doesn’t everyone know how effective acupuncture is ?