Our network

New battlefield acupuncture could soon come to Robins AFB | Community Spirit

Title (Max 100 Characters)

New battlefield acupuncture could soon come to Robins AFB
New battlefield acupuncture could soon come to Robins AFB

ROBINS AIR FORCE BASE, Ga. – Medical patients here looking for pain relief may soon have the option of nontraditional treatment.

The treatment, called battlefield acupuncture, was recently introduced to physicians and other healthcare professionals by Dr Tom Piazza, one of three acupuncturists at Andrews Air Force Base, Md.

Piazza led a day-long training session at the 78th Medical Group to get personnel acquainted with and ultimately credentialed on the battlefield acupuncture. Students received hands-on instruction by performing the acupuncture procedure on each other as well as volunteers seeking relief from persistent pain.

The procedure is specific to the surface of the ear and consists of five small needles, which remain in place for two to four days before being removed or falling out on their own. Though performed in minutes, results of the procedure are often felt within seconds.

Just ask Staff Sgt. Tabitha Loomis, who volunteered for battlefield acupuncture because of chronic pain due to a dislocated collarbone.

“This was my first time and I was completely skeptical,” said the 78th MDG medical technician.  “I haven’t been this pain-free without medication for years. I’m a believer.”

Master Sgt. Michael Dougherty, 78th MDG independent duty medical technician, is an advocate of the treatment and is hopeful the practice will soon be available at the base clinic.  

“We’re still working out the details,” he said. “The ultimate vision is that the clinic will soon have the ability to devote half a day each week for battlefield acupuncture.”

Robins Businesses