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Alternative Medicine

Because alternative medicine is largely unproven through traditional rational scientific methods and because it is generally not as profitable as modern Western medical practices, it has remained largely unknown to the general public and widely ignored by traditional American medical practitioners. However, during the 1990s both social norms and medical trends have led to a growing consciousness of and increased use of alternative forms of medicine. These forms vary widely and can include chiropractic medicine, homeopathy, aromatherapy, yoga, acupuncture, acupressure, reflexology and a host of other alternatives to traditional modern medical modalities. There is a fundamental ideological difference also underlying the debate between modern medicine and alternative medicine, “Whether conventional medicine’s religious belief in scientific rationalism can coexist with the more broadly based, philosophical and spiritual beliefs of alternative medicine remains to be seen” (Seninger, 1998, 21).

All the unconventional forms of alternative medicine available, the lack of certification often required to practice it, and the often clinically unproven nature of its efficacy have all conspired to make critics condemn it as quackery while making the conventional medical establishment adverse to validating it. Nonetheless, the medical community is being forced to examine many forms of alternative medicine because the public is pushing them to from its increased use of them and because of its beneficial effects for people suffering from a variety of ills, from infertility to carpal tunnel syndrome. As Seninger (1998) reports, 40% of the American public utilizes some form of alternative medicine and, as Wineke (1997) reveals, “Alternative medicine, including acupuncture, is now a $13 billion market” (1G).

While there are many forms of alternative medicine, the main focus herein will be on acupuncture and acupressure. Both of the...

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Alternative Medicine. (1969, December 31). In LotsofEssays.com. Retrieved 01:12, May 25, 2020, from https://www.lotsofessays.com/viewpaper/1684982.html