Dr. Zhou is a licensed acupuncturist and herbalist, serving Austin, Texas and the surrounding area. He has over 28 years of experience practicing in the US and a doctorate in Traditional Chinese Medicine. He understands the complexity of back problems and their relationship to the flow of qi. Scroll down to read more.
In most cases, back pain is considered to be caused by stagnant qi and blood, which is expressed as inflammation. In other cases, back pain can be attributed to muscle problems or aging. Acupuncture can promote or balance the flow of qi and blood and reduce inflammation. It can also strengthen the muscle, ligaments, and bones. It not only reduces and relieves the pain but treats the cause of pain. Acupuncture works to heal the back and causes of the pain, not as temporary relief.
Those who are pregnant or have any special health concerns should consult with Dr. Zhou and their physician prior to beginning acupuncture. Dr. Zhou has experience treating patients with a variety of conditions, especially women's health and fertility. For the vast majority of people, there are very little or no risks associated with the procedure.
The causes of lower back pain fall into four major categories: injuries or trauma, tumors, degeneration, and congenital problems. Injuries can occur from overuse or lifting incorrectly, or from outside trauma like a car accident. Tumors can grow inside the spine or muscles of the lower back. Degeneration occurs from wear and tear, either through overuse or as part of the aging process. Congenital problems include conditions like scoliosis, in which the spine is twisted.
Almost everyone experiences lower back pain at some point in their lives. Back pain is more common during pregnancy and as people age. Overuse or incorrect use of muscles can also cause inflammation and muscle soreness. Being overweight or obese increases the risk of back pain, especially if the abdominal muscles are weak. Even children can develop back pain from heavy backpacks.
After a weekend of heavy work or sports, some lower back soreness is not uncommon. Back pain is especially likely in people who use poor body mechanics. Pain that doesn't go away after a few days, however, or is accompanied by numbness or weakness in the legs, should receive prompt attention.
Many acupuncture points for back pain are in the local area. For instance, those with lower back pain may benefit from stimulation to the paraspinal muscles located slightly above the hip bones, which are known as the 3rd lumbar spinal vertebrae. Additionally, applying needles to these areas has the potential to help those who have pinched nerves or sciatic pain, which oftentimes causes shooting pain and numbness in the legs. Other points of focus for lower back pain are the pressure points around the hips. They are located a few inches laterally from the tail bone. These points help with sciatica and pain in the pelvic region and hips. There are also many distal points, which locate in the arms, legs ears and on the scalp.
Our clinic participates in most major insurance programs and networks. However, insurance plans vary in coverage so acupuncture is not a guaranteed benefit, even when Dr. Ziyang Zhou is an in-network provider. Please call your insurance company to verify or our office can verify it for you. We are proud to now be covered by Veterans Affairs Patient Centered Community Care (VAPC3). See our "Before Your Visit" page in Patient Information for more information. Currently Medicare covers acupuncture for lower-back pain only when it is performed by medical doctors or in their offices. Licensed acupuncturists are not covered because we’re not in-network with Medicare. Without insurance coverage, we offer a discounted rate of $110 for the first treatment and $95 for each additional treatment. Or we offer a prepaid package of 5 treatments for $85 each for a total of $425 ($65 in savings).
"Such a rare and qualified practitioner. Has helped both me and my children immeasurably with a number of health issues. Highly recommend."
"For five years the acupuncture, herbs and consultation that I have received from Dr. Zhou have created a sense of ease in my system and daily life."
"Dr. Zhou at Pine Mountain is incredible. I've had about 15 treatments so far, and my back and elbow injuries feel much better."
"I started going to Dr. Zhou three years ago. I now consider him my primary care doctor since he has helped me with IBS, allergies, menstrual period, and hypothyroidism."
"Best Acupuncturist in Austin! He initially treated me for female infertility issues. I conceived within 2 months. Currently treating me for pregnancy aches and pains."
"He is fabulous! He also understands medical terminology because he was a Medical Doctor in China, which helps the bridge over from Western medicine to Eastern medicine."
"Dr. Zhou is very professional and demonstrates a level of care and concern not often found in the medical industry today. I would highly recommend him."
"I am extremely nervous about needles but Dr. Zhou is extremely gentle and tailors his technique to the patient."