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DoctorGetWell's Monthly Column
Dr. Alex Tatevian has maintained a monthly acupuncture column in the health section of the Federal Hill Gazette since 1999.      
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  Federall Hill Gazette; June 2003

The "Kiss of the Dragon"

   The growing interest in acupuncture helps the public awareness about the benefits of acupuncture and curiosity about its potential. The popularity of acupuncture sometimes tempts the media and film makers to use it as a special effect to bring dramatic images to tease people's imaginations.
    This is an actual question that we have received from one of our readers.
    Question:
   "I know this may seen like a retarded question, but last I saw the movie "Kiss of The Dragon" and Jet Lee in the movie had this wrist band with acupuncture needles on it and throughout the movie (to stop his enemies) he would stick a needle and this would basically paralyze them so they could not move.
   Well, he also used a needle on this bad guy and placed it on the upper part of his neck. It (of course) paralyzed him and sent the blood to his brain and he had blood pouring out his eyes. Pretty cool actually.
   I think that part was Hollywood style, but I was just curious if you can paralyze someone by placing a needle on certain areas of the body. Thanks, Michael Kilby.
    Answer:
   Dear Michael,
   Yes, it is a Hollywood style movie. Nevertheless, your question is very interesting.
    The "Kiss of the Dragon" point is actually point 15 of the Governing Vessel. It is a popular and widely used point for therapeutic purposes. It is also known in the martial arts as a knock-out point and even as a lethal point.
    Therapeutic needling requires great caution as the incorrect angle of the needle insertion can (in theory) direct the needle into the cerebellum and even into the brain stem.
   The effect may be very harmful (just another reason to make sure that your acupuncturist is qualified and experienced). However, in practice, no adverse effects associated with this point were ever reported in the medical literature. To do harm by needling this point, an acupuncturist must be extremely ignorant, arrogant and very creative at the same time. Or, it would require secret knowledge and special skill available only to select Hollywood stars.
    I prepared a diagram to illustrate this information. To see it, please visit my website DoctorGetWell.org, go to "Side effects" and scroll down.
   Thank you for the remarkable question. With your permission, I will publish it. And, by the way, Jet Li in that movie was magnificent, as always. I am a big fan of his .
   Best regards,
   
   Alex Tatevian, DA
   
   We welcome all questions that you may have.
   You can ask your questions on-line at DoctorGetWell.org, e-mail them to getwell@doctor.com , or send them to:
   
   Alex Tatevian, DA
   Acu Well Acupuncture & Integrative Medicine
   141 Airport Road, Warwick, RI 02889
   Phone (401) 738-9355
 
 
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