• Patient Education

    By providing simple explanations, we help patients understand their health concerns and make informed choices regarding their care.
  • confidence

    Our volunteers acquire the confidence to serve as primary care providers, treating 15 to 25 patients per day in our community style clinic.
  • Cultural Immersion

    Before we can provide effective medical care we must first learn to understand how our patients live.
  • Primary Care

    Since 2008, Acupuncture Relief Project volunteers have delivered over 300,000 primary care visits in rural Nepal.
  • Providing Access

    According to the World Health Organization, Nepal's healthcare system ranks 150th in the world with less than one doctor per 6000 people.
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Our Mission

Our unique model provides effective, efficient, primary care in rural Nepal. Read More
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Our Clinics

Since 2008, our clinics have provided over 350,000 primary care visits. Read More
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Our Partners

Influencing government policy and achieving educational goals. Read More
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Volunteer With Us

We need your help. Serve others while learning new skills. Read More
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Our Evidence

Case studies and field research helps us analyze our efficacy. Read More
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VOLUNTEER COMMUNITY CARE CLINICS IN NEPAL

Nepal remains one of the poorest countries in the world and has been plagued with political unrest and military conflict for the past decade. In 2015, a pair of major earthquakes devastated this small and fragile country. 

Since 2008, the Acupuncture Relief Project has provided over 300,000 treatments to patients living in rural villages outside of Kathmandu Nepal. Our efforts include the treatment of patients living without access to modern medical care as well as people suffering from extreme poverty, substance abuse and social disfranchisement.

Common conditions include musculoskeletal pain, digestive pain, hypertension, diabetes, stroke rehabilitation, uterine prolapse, asthma, and recovery from tuberculosis treatment, typhoid fever, and surgery.

Read More

Featured Case Studies

  • Acute Cholecystitis +

    70-year-old female presents with acute abdominal, chest and scapular pain, vomiting and diarrhea. At the local hospital, she Read More
  • Chronic Headache (Typhoid Fever Sequela) +

    43-year-old female presents with a severe headache. 9 months ago, the patient contracted Typhoid fever. During the illness, Read More
  • Chronic Non-Healing Ear Ulcers +

    15-year-old female presents with purulent, non-healing ulcers in the right ear canal. After 20 treatments, using an integrative Read More
  • Massage for Chronic Back Pain Associated with Spondylosis of the Spine +

    70-year-old male referred for massage treatments for pain associated with spondylosis of the spine and neuropathy. The patient Read More
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Compassion Connect : Documentary Series

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    In the aftermath of the 2015 Gorkha Earthquake, this episode explores the challenges of providing basic medical access for people living in rural areas.

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    Episode 1: Rural Primary Care

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    Acupuncture Relief Project tackles complicated medical cases through accurate assessment and the cooperation of both governmental and non-governmental agencies.

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    EPISODE 2: INTEGRATED MEDICINE

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    Cooperation with the local government yields a unique opportunities to establish a new integrated medicine outpost in Bajra Barahi, Makawanpur, Nepal.

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    EPISODE 3: WORKING WITH THE GOVERNMENT

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    Complicated medical cases require extraordinary effort. This episode follows 4-year-old Sushmita in her battle with tuberculosis.

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    EPISODE 4: CASE MANAGEMENT

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    Drug and alcohol abuse is a constant issue in both rural and urban areas of Nepal. Local customs and few treatment facilities prove difficult obstacles.

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    EPISODE 5: SOBER RECOVERY

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    Interpreters help make a critical connection between patients and practitioners. This episode explores the people that make our medicine possible and what it takes to do the job.

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    EPISODE 6: THE INTERPRETERS

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    This episode looks at the people and the process of creating a new generation of Nepali rural health providers.

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    EPISODE 7: FUTURE DOCTORS OF NEPAL

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    In this 2011, documentary, Film-maker Tristan Stoch successfully illustrates many of the complexities of providing primary medical care in a third world environment.

    Watch Episode

    COMPASSION CONNECTS: 2012 PILOT EPISODE

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From Our Blog

 


Jennifer Walker MAcOM LAc
December 2011
Overview

Acupuncture Case Study35-year-old female presents with left-sided facial twitching and paralysis. After 7 acupuncture treatments, the patient regained over 50% of her facial functioning with 80% of the facial twitching resolved.

SUBJECTIVE

Patient presents with left-sided facial twitching and paralysis. There is painful twitching with frequent tearing of the left eye. The cheek and mouth also twitch, and feel as if “the face is twisted.” She has moderate pain (5/10) with smiling that interferes with sleep, concentration and in social situations, causing her not to want to interact with others. Nothing makes the pain worse. The quality of the pain is sharp. She reports that the twitching is activated when eating or performing other motions with the mouth. The throat is sore and the patient is having difficulty shouting. Patient reports waking with the condition 15 days prior. She has not received any other treatment or medication for this condition. She walks for about an hour to get to the clinic. There is no prior history of the condition. The patient states that on her side of the bed there is a window with a draft.

OBJECTIVE

Acupuncture Case StudyPatient appears to be in good health for her age, cultural background and environment. She has a suppressed demeanor and it is difficult to maintain eye contact with her. She speaks very low and says few words when questioned.

There is no visible facial twitching. Upon cranial nerve exam, cranial nerve v, the trigeminal nerve, shows laxity in the masseter muscle. Cranial nerve vii, the facial nerve, shows difficulty in closing and keeping the left eye closed, pursing lips, baring teeth, flaring the nostril and expanding the cheeks with air while keeping the mouth closed. All sharp/dull sensory tests are negative. All tests are negative for any involvement of the right side of the face.

Pulses are thin and wiry. No visible deviation of the tongue or thick coat.

ASSESSMENT

DX: Facial paralysis (Bell’s palsy) Restricted or impaired control and functioning found in the cranial nerve exam shows motor impairment of the following muscles: orbicular oculi (closes eyelids), levator labii superioris alaeque nasir + alar part of nasalis (flair nostrils), buccinator + orbicularis oris (puff out cheeks with air while pursing lips), risorius plus levator labii superioris + depressor labii inferioris (bare teeth). Based on the cranial nerve exam, the facial nerve is predominantly affected, leading to the diagnosis of Bell’s palsy.

TCM DX: LR wind rising due to LR blood deficiency

PROGNOSIS: Because the patient is starting treatment in the acute stage, a full recovery is expected.

INITIAL PLAN

Treat with acupuncture 3-5 times per week for 10 treatments before reassessing. Focus on nourishing and building LR blood and eliminating LR wind. Use needles on the face to stimulate the multiple affected muscles. Internally, use Dang Gui San 1tsp TID to tonify blood.

Typical treatment: Bilateral: ST36, LI4, LI10, LR3, LR8, Yin Tong, GB20; Left: 1 needle threaded from the midline just below the lower lip up to the left corner of the mouth, TW17, SI19, LI19, LI20, GB1, ST3, ST4, ST5, ST6, ST7, CV24, Jia Cheng Jiang; All needles with strong stimulation  

OUTCOME

After 6 treatments, the patient reported 1/3rd improvement in the condition. The facial twitching was reduced and no longer visible after needles were inserted. The left eye closed without any difficulty and there was no longer any tearing of the eye during treatment. The patient reported no longer having a sore throat or difficulty shouting. There was no longer any laxity in the masseter muscle. Cranial nerve testing still showed some difficulty smiling, baring teeth and puffing out cheeks with lips pursed. Visually, the patient could perform these tasks at least 50% better than during the first treatment. The patient was able to make eye contact and be much more engaged during treatment.

CONCLUSION

With continued care, it is possible that this patient can expect to see a complete recovery. Her condition has already responded favorably to acupuncture and herbal treatment. During the last visit, the patient was asked to start coming in for treatment every other day for 2 weeks to determine how much progress can be made during this time. She was also counseled to move her bed to an area of the house where there are fewer windows and no draft. In addition, her herbs will be increased to 2tsp of Dang Gui San TID.

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