Updated: April 6th, 2022
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Acupuncture Treatments have been used for thousands of years to help treat a variety of ailments that plague the body. This is an overview of a case report written in February 2022 about the effects of Acupuncture Treatments on a patient with stage IV metastatic cancer. After the patient underwent surgery and chemotherapy as treatment for colorectal, they were diagnosed with liver cancer. Cancer-free for a year, the patient was diagnosed with Stage IV cancer in his liver and right lung. Due to quality of life concerns, the patient sought acupuncture treatments for a period of 14 months. This case suggests that Five Element acupuncture can support the well-being of a patient diagnosed with cancer. Read the full Case Report here.

The Report

A patient who had been previously diagnosed with colon cancer, that had metastasized to his liver came to experience an acupuncture treatment. His colon cancer had been treated, as had the cancer that had invaded his liver. Shortly after starting acupuncture, one of his routine scans revealed that the cancer in his liver had grown.

He was treated with five element acupuncture to address the physical and emotional effects of several years of cancer. Five element acupuncture is a system that is extremely holistic, focusing not only on the physical symptoms, it also combines treatment of physical symptoms with supporting the mental and emotional/spiritual aspects of a person.

Acupuncture Treatment Outcomes

During the treatment, he addressed the emotions of guilt for ways he felt he let his family down over the years. The acupuncture treatment allowed him to move through these feelings, rebuild a stronger relationship with his family and friends, and accept himself. In addition, while the cancer did continue to grow, he remained symptom free from October, when he started acupuncture, until August. At that time, he took a trip to Africa to assist in the construction of several buildings. Upon his return, he demonstrated symptoms of cough and shortness of breath due to tumors in his lungs. He passed the following December.

This patient was able to move, with grace, through the stages of grief that accompanies a terminal diagnosis. In working on unresolved emotions, he found a new strength within himself and an ability to re-connect more deeply both with himself and his family. I was able to see him move from fear and frustration to acceptance and contentment. While sad that his time was coming to an end, he appeared to be more settled. His face shifted from closed and lined, from deeply felt unexpressed emotions to open and vibrant. He said, “Acupuncture treatment allowed me to have the energy to continue with my work and be with my family for a longer time than I thought I would be. I felt more vibrant and calmer and more able to accept my life and the future.”

Acupuncture Treatments at the Natural Care Center (NCC)

For more than 40 years, the Natural Care Center at Maryland University of Integrative Health, which includes our student teaching clinic and professional practitioners, has provided powerful, meaningful, and effective healing experiences for patients and clients that arrive with a wide array of health challenges. During an acupuncture treatment at the NCC, Acupuncturists insert sterile, hair-thin, single-use needles into the body with a specific intention to elicit an appropriate movement of energy. The desired result is to offer the patient a concrete sense of spiritual, emotional, and physical balance. Patients who pursue ongoing treatment for maintenance and promotion of good health report: staying well longer and recovering from illness more quickly; improved stamina and vitality; improved capacity to positively influence their own health; reductions in long-term health-care costs and less frequent visits to physicians; and deepened and more harmonious relationships with others.

During your first visit at the NCC, your practitioner will discuss your health concerns and have the opportunity to assess the underlying conditions leading to your current situation, perform a physical examination, and let you know what to expect when returning for regular treatments. To talk with someone about making an appointment, call 443-906-5794 or email 

Study Acupuncture at MUIH

Interested in learning more about studying acupuncture to help patients with healing experiences using complementary medicine? Visit our Acupuncture Academic Programs to learn more about growing your future in acupuncture. As a student, you’ll learn the the fundamental skills and knowledge to achieve clinical competency and to become a licensed acupuncturist. Coursework includes the study of western medical models as well as the philosophy, theory, and clinical application of acupuncture. Graduates are prepared to treat patients on the levels of mind, body and spirit, and to work in various health and wellness settings, especially private and small group practices.