Conditions We Treat

Pain Management

Internal Medicine


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treatments provided at
Marin Acupuncture Clinic



Acupuncture is an essential part of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), aacupuncture on foot comprehensive system of healthcare with a continuous clinical history of over 5,000 years.

Acupuncture is the Chinese medical practice of inserting micro-fine, pre-sterilized needles into specific points on the body to promote health and combat disease, thereby balancing Qi (pronounced chee), which means the metabolic and physiological functions of the body.

Each acupuncture point has a specific purpose and function with a predictable result. Acupuncture points are selected and combined based on a patient’s particular diagnosis. Most people find acupuncture treatments very relaxing and even blissful.  Usually, the very slight initial prick of insertion is followed by a warm or tingling sensation that radiates across the body.  The mind then comes to rest, and the qi (life energy) of the body is encouraged to flow freely.

Acupuncture can be used to treat acute and chronic problems as well as provide preventative medical treatment. Acupuncture has been clinically proven to:
• Regulate hormones
• Improve circulation
• Alleviate pain
• Strengthen immunity against disease
• Speed recovery time from injury and surgical procedures
• Promote relaxation and the body’s “rest and digest” functions (parasympathetic activity)
• Ease emotional issues

For a complete list of conditions acupuncture can treat, click here. To view research on acupuncture’s efficacy, click here.


Chinese Herbal Medicine

herbal medicine

For some conditions, Chinese herbs are the most important and effective treatment modality and allow the benefits of the healing process to continue between patient visits.

There is a rich and carefully evidenced history of Chinese herbal prescriptions, dating back thousands of years. Made from organic substances such as plants, flowers and minerals, Chinese herbs are the precursors of Western pharmaceuticals. Unlike their synthetic counterparts however, Chinese herbal formulas rarely elicit side effects and have been proven safe during thousands of years of use.

Chinese herbs are highly specific in their actions, temperature, flavor and direction, and are carefully combined to form balanced prescriptions aimed at the diagnosed pattern. Depending on the nature of your complaint you may be prescribed water-based decoctions, concentrated granular extracts, concentrated tinctures, capsules, tablets or "teapills."  All herbal formulas are designed either to strengthen and support the body, regulate the function of internal organs, or clear the body of excess conditions like a cold, fever, or pain.

The products we stock are guaranteed certified GMP (Good Manufacturing Practices) and are free of heavy metals. Herbs can be very beneficial, but they should not be taken indiscriminately. Be sure to follow the labeled dosage and call your physician and us if you experience any adverse effects.

Some herbal formulas may not be appropriate to take if you are pregnant or catching a cold. If you feel you are catching a cold, call us to discuss your symptoms and find out if it is appropriate to continue taking your current formula. For example, your formula may need to be modified if it has strengthening herbs so that they do not accidentally strengthen the cold.

Make sure to let us know if you are trying to conceive or become pregnant so that we can determine if your formula is appropriate during pregnancy.


Moxibustionmoxa treatment

Moxibustion is an adjunct Chinese medical therapy that involves the application of heat to certain acupuncture points. We often use indirect moxibustion, which involves holding a cigar-shaped stick of smoldering mugwort (a Chinese herb) over the points indicated until a feeling of warmth penetrates deeply into the underlying tissues. Moxibustion is especially helpful for poor digestion, sensations of cold (i.e. hypothyroidism), sexual dysfunction, arthritis, and as cold/flu prevention. Patients enjoy this sensation of warmth and find it very relaxing.



Cupping involves placing glass cups on the body, especially the back. The inside of the cup is first quickly heated to create a vacuum. It is then applied to the skin to form a suction of muscle and tissue. This stimulates strong blood flow to the area, which is helpful for relieving tension and muscle cramps. Patients report that cupping feels wonderful and is just like receiving a deep-tissue massage.

Important Note: Cupping often produces superficial bruising that typically lasts from 2 to 5 days. These bruises are not painful, but you may find them unsightly.


Nutritional & Lifestyle Counseling

Diet, nutrition and lifestyle are important elements that round out the Chinese medical treatment plan.  We will educate you as to which foods or supplements should be added or eliminated based on your particular diagnosis and wellness goals. The philosophy of traditional Chinese medicine is to achieve a balanced lifestyle.   With our modern day stressors it can be a challenge to take good care of yourself, so that you can look and feel your best. During your visits, we will educate you on stress reduction techniques, exercise programs, meditation and relaxation. Nutritional counseling is included in an acupuncture visit or can be done separately.

Chinese Energetic Medicine (Medical QiGong)

Qigong Therapy has two branches: Qigong the movement meditation formmedical qigong (similar to Tai Chi), and Medical Qigong, an energetic medical system that addresses the energy imbalances that contribute to ailments and disease.

Medical Qigong is a form of light-touch bodywork designed to return the body's bio-magnetic fields to their optimal frequency.  It has been used in the hospitals in China for centuries and has positive, clinically recognized effects on the electrical activity of the brain, blood flow, heart function, kidney processes, biophysical states, eyesight, bone density, lung function, and pain reduction.  To view some of the clinical research on the efficacy of Medical Qigong, please click here.  On a surface level a Medical Qigong looks similar to a Reiki treatment, but Medical Qigong’s system is one of advanced diagnostics and treatment protocols.

Lindsey Hayes Koelman is one of a handful of acupuncturists trained in the West to perform Medical Qigong and her teacher is a world specialist in Medical Qigong Oncology.

Lindsey is also a certified instructor of Qigong, the movement meditation form. It is an ancient Chinese discipline that teaches us to mirror the movements of nature, especially the fluidity of water, to help reduce tension and stress, assist in alleviating pain, and cultivate more energy. Qi gong involves a series of physical postures, breathing techniques, mind-body techniques, and exercises to focusLindsey practicing Qigong intention. Qi Gong delivers a complete workout for mind, body, and spirit, which according to Chinese medical thought, helps prevent and alleviate a variety of diseases. Qi Gong is an excellent method to develop strength and flexibility, increase energy, boost the immune system, clear stress, and calm the mind.

Lindsey has taught several series of Qigong classes to women undergoing the menopausal transition and also to cancer patients.

Auriculotherapyear acupuncture

While originating in China, ear acupuncture was rigorously tested by French researchers in the 20th century. They found that the ear point correspondences formed a pattern resembling an inverted fetus in the womb. There are over 100 points in the ear, which may be used to treat all kinds of pain, digestive disturbances, addiction withdrawal, and more.

Seeds and Magnets

A special type of round seed and tiny magnetic balls can be used to stimulate certain acu-points on the body. These seeds and magnets can be taped to the body, which you can press to stimulate the healing affects of that particular point. In this way, needles are not needed and the points can be stimulated daily to continue the treatments after you’ve left your appointment. This technique is often used on the ear.

In Sum, Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) is an umbrella term including:

Acupuncture, Chinese Herbal Medicine, Diet Therapy, Medical Massage, and Medical Qigong. Chinese medicine is, in itself, a complete health care system that has prevented and treated illness for thousands of years. In the recent history of our country, ever-growing numbers of Medical Doctors and Patients have turned to Chinese medicine, not only as a means of strengthening the body, which can be weakened by modern-day stress, but also to treat serious conditions deemed “incurable” by Western medicine.  Click here to see a list of commonly treated conditions.

Chinese medicine is a distinct and separate system of medical thought and practice from modern biomedicine. Chinese medicine is the oldest, continuously practiced, literate, professional medical system in the world. Chinese medicine has taken the Chinese over 5000 years to develop. As it is a complete, well-researched medical system, it is difficult to both explain and comprehend in western scientific or medical terms.

In its wisdom, Chinese medicine is able to determine the strengths and weaknesses of individual Patients. Many Patients experience sub-clinical complaints, such as fatigue, headache, low sex drive or weight gain. Western medicine often does not recognize the significance of these complaints. Chinese medicine views any observable symptom or sign as related to Internal Organ function. A careful Patient interview and exam reveals to the TCM practitioner which systems in the body are strong and which are weak. This method allows not only treatment of the immediate condition, but also keeps the body/mind strong with preventative care. Chinese medicine can ‘see’ structures and functions that are weakened before they physically manifest. This is perhaps the most significant aspect of Chinese medicine. TCM has been utilized and proven effective for thousands of years in eastern countries such as China, Japan, and Korea.  It is now finally being integrated into Western society and Western Medicine.


chinese medical bookThere are many ways that Acupuncturists diagnose problems in the body. Often we get information by asking questions, feeling the many pulse positions on the wrist, looking at the tongue, and palpating along channels of the body. Feel free to inquire about your particular diagnosis and treatment plan. Please keep in mind that a complete understanding of Eastern Medicine requires many years of study and practice, which can be difficult to explain during the relatively short time span of a typical appointment. If you seek more information, I’m glad to recommend some
excellent books on the subject:

Between Heaven and Earth by Harriet Beinfield and Efrem Korngold

The Web That Has No Weaver by Ted Kaptchuk, OMD

Healing With Whole Foods: Oriental Traditions and Modern Nutrition by Paul Pitchford