Mary C.* is reclining in a cool, dimmed room at The Spa at St. Dominic’s. Her hands and feet are propped on soft cushions. Soft, relaxing music is playing quietly in the background as she closes her eyes. The headache that plagued her all day is slowly dissipating as she drifts into a relaxed state.

Those viewing this idyllic scene would likely find it hard to believe that just moments before, licensed acupuncturist Dennis Holmes, MSOM, LAc, inserted several needles into Mary C.’s hands, feet and temple. Following the insertion of the hair-thin needles, the memory of the slight twinges quickly disappeared along with her headache.

“I felt some tiny pricks as the needles went in, but only for a few minutes,” she said. “I’ve tried many other treatments and medications to treat my migraines, but nothing has helped me like acupuncture.”

The slight discomfort from the needles is hardly comparable to the pain that brought Mary C. to St. Dominic’s Spa for treatment. As an administrative assistant for a local company, she spends long hours working at her computer. This fact, along with other triggers such as lack of sleep and a change in her routine, often leaves her with agonizing pain on one side of her head, a common side effect of migraines.

When it comes to most of her medical care, Mary C. prefers a combination of drugs and other conventional treatments, but nothing she’s found alleviates migraine pain better than acupuncture.

“Western medicine may not totally approve of acupuncture,” she said, “but acupuncture really works. Best of all, I don’t have to take a pill every day.”


*Mary C., a pseudonym of an actual patient undergoing acupuncture, approved
the release of her story
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