THOMAS MEADE, ACUPUNCTURIST
Skamania Acupuncture Clinic
40 SW CASCADE AVE., SUITE 40
STEVENSON, WA 98648
(509) 427-3468 (FAX)
In WASHINGTON, Acupuncture is an ESSENTIAL HEALTH BENEFIT, meaning that all health care plans purchased in Washington after 2014 are supposed to have acupuncture coverage. Depending on the kind of health insurance you have, you may only pay a copay for your treatment. Copays usually range anywhere from $10-50, depending on the insurance plan. If you have co-insurance, you may be billed for a percentage of the treatment cost, after insurance has paid their portion. If your policy has a deductible, you may pay the cash rates for your visits until the deductible has been meet. If you would like to know what your insurance covers for acupuncture- contact Skamania Acupuncture Clinic- (509) 637-3163. We will collect your insurance information, contact your insurance company, and verify your benefits- free of charge! Be sure to bring your insurance card and photo ID to your first appointment!
At Skamania Acupuncture Clinic, we are also able to treat motor vehicle accident patients- "personal injury" patients. If you are currently recovering from a car accident, your acupuncture care may be able to be covered by the responsible car insurance company through a policy known as med-pay, or can be covered by your settlement with the use of a lien. Acupuncture is excellent for helping to alleviate the pain and discomfort of soft tissue injuries following car accidents and will be an important step in your recovery.
Rates for Acupuncture for patients not using Insurance Benefits is $80.
Outcall/ mobile acupuncture
Tom is available to treat patients outside of Skamania Acupuncture Clinic, in patient homes as needed. Availability for outcall treatments depends on:
- Health Condition(s) being treated: quadriplegia, paraplegia, cerebral palsy, stroke recovery, spinal cord injuries, or other injuries/ illnesses that limit a patient's ability to receive treatment at Skamania Acupuncture Clinic.
- Location- limited to Skamania County
- Available by Appointment Only on select days- currently available Wednesdays and Fridays.
- Depending on distance, a $25-50 travel fee will be applied. Health insurance can be used to pay for the treatment; however, it is not common for insurance to reimburse for travel; unless the condition treated limits mobility and travel.
Please contact Skamania Acupuncture Clinic for more information and to verify your insurance benefits: (509) 637-3163.
Every new patient to Skamania Acupuncture Clinic is invited to have a Free Consultation for their first treatment. The Free Consultation includes:
15 minute Consultation with Tom Meade, the Acupuncturist at SAC, with a Tour of the Clinic.
Brief Discussion of Your Health Concerns.
Complementary Insurance Benefit Verification and Discussion of the Fee Schedule.
PLUS a Mini Trial Acupuncture Treatment.
We are happy to answer all your questions about Acupuncture and East Asian Medicine and share/ explain all financial information prior to you starting care in the clinic.
Some people are curious or concerned about Acupuncture Needles- the goal of the mini trial Acupuncture treatment is to satisfy curiosity and alleviate concerns.
Call Skamania Acupuncture Clinic (509) 637-3163 to schedule your Free Consultation.
Do you know a friend, family member, or co-worker who lives locally and has health concerns?
Please consider sharing this offer with them – you may be part of changing their life by improving their health- Thank you!
The Free Consultation Offer is valid for new patients of Skamania Acupuncture Clinic only. Limit one per pateint. Appointments are required. A 24 hour cancellation notice is requested. This cannot be combined with any other offer or promotion.
Your First Acupuncture Visit
Prior to all of your acupuncture treatments, please eat a regular meal (not too heavy or light) and drink plenty of water. Avoid caffeine at least an hour before treatment. Wear clothes that are loose and easily moved above the elbows and knees.
Generally, your first treatment is longer than normal- 60 to 90 minutes. If you have completed your initial health history forms online or on paper, you do not need to arrive early. If you have not completed this paperwork, please arrive 30 minutes before your appointment time.
Bring your insurance card- we will complete a FREE insurance acupuncture benefit verification. If you do not have insurance, we will discuss the fee schedule and payment options prior to treatment.
Your appointment will begin with a thorough discussion of your health history and your health concerns. Following this conversation, you will be examined, based on your health complaints, using East Asian Medicine and Conventional Medication techniques. After questioning and exam, your acupuncture treatment will begin.
treatments, Exams, and therapy modalities
An Acupuncture treatment is generally 50 to 90 minutes, depending on the condition being treated and the different modalities used in your care. These modalities include:
- Acupuncture with Electrical Stimulation
- Massage and Stretching
- Heat Packs and Infrared Lamps
- External Herbal Application
- Cupping/ Gua Sha
- Nutritional Counseling
- Exercise/ Stretching Recommendations
- Herbal/ Supplement Prescriptions
An initial acupuncture treatment begins with questioning and examination (physical examination of the body based on the condition being treated), followed by acupuncture. A typical treatment from Tom starts with questioning/ exam, then 30-45 minutes of acupuncture. Some treatments may include a manual therapy (massage, cupping, or gua sha), depending on the condition treated.
At Skamania Acupuncture Clinic, treatments take place in two different settings: sitting in a recliner chair (group setting) or treatment/ massage table (private room). Treatments in the recliner chairs involve use of "Distal" acupuncture, where needles are only placed at points below the elbows or knees, in the ears, and/ or in the scalp. Typical Acupuncture treatments at SAC are individualized treatments, where Acupuncture points are selected based on your health needs and concerns. Aside from our standard Acupuncture Treatments, we have HAPPY HOUR treatments- these are reduced rate/ time-of-service treatments focused on stress. These HAPPY HOUR treatments involve no medical intake, are standardized to 10 specific points, and are shorter in duration (40 minutes). We also offer NADA treatments- these are Auricular (Ear) Acupuncture treatments focused on addiction. If you are trying to quit smoking, lose weight, or overcome compulsive behaviors, the NADA treatments are a safe and discreet way to reduce cravings and withdrawal symptoms. NADA treatments are most effective with multiple treatments a week, and are offered in the same format of HAPPY HOUR treatments- reduced time-of-service fee and standardized points.
Acupuncture is the insertion of small, sterile needles into the skin and underlying tissue throughout the body . In East Asian Medicine, acupuncture points are located on specific "energy channels" that cross the body. Modern application of acupuncture utilizes these traditional points and trigger/ motor points found on tight muscle bands. Acupuncture helps to reduce pain, reduce inflammation, improve daily functioning, and stimulate a variety of neurological effects to charge the internal environment of the body. Acupuncture is useful in treatment of a wide variety of health conditions. For more information about acupuncture, CLICK the PICTURE, and check out the What is Acupuncture? page.
Auricular Acupuncture is the insertion of small, sterile needles into the skin and cartilage of the ear. The ear has four innervations from the cranial nerves (nerves that come directly from the brain and innervate the sense organs), making the ear an ideal location to access neurological tracks that go directly to the brain. Because of these nerves, auricular acupuncture has very potent neurological effects and has been used with great success for addiction conditions, pain conditions, and mental health conditions, including depression and anxiety.
Scalp Acupuncture is the insertion of small, sterile needles into the skin and muscle of the scalp. Scalp acupuncture affects the neurology of the head and face, leading to direct stimulation of brain. Because of this stimulation of the brain, scalp acupuncture is effective in the treatment of pain, paralysis, and numbness/ tingling associated with neurodegenerative disorders. Scalp acupuncture is used in the treatment of Parkinson's disease, multiple sclerosis, stroke recovery, traumatic brain injury, spinal cord injury, Bell's palsy, motor neuron diseases, paraplegia/quadriplegia, phantom limb pain, and seizure disorders.
"E-Stim" is the use of electrical currents to stimulate the nerves of the body that are in close proximity to the acupuncture needles placed in the skin. E-Stim machines create a light/ gentle current of electricity that can enhance the effects of an acupuncture treatment. The electrical current stimulates the release of different neuropeptides in the brain and spinal cord, helping to reduce pain and inflammation associated with orthopedic (bone and muscle) and neurological conditions. Different frequencies of electrical current are used for different conditions and regions of the body.
Moxibustion (or "Moxa") is the burning of a traditional herb called Mugwort on or over the skin. The stimulation of the heated moxa helps to increase local blood circulation while warming the skin. From a traditional Chinese medical prospective, diseases can be caused in the body by "invasion" of pathological influences. "Cold" can invade the body, causing "cold" diseases, such as a cold/ influenza, arthritis, low energy, or digestive upset. The heat of the moxa helps to expel the "cold" pathogen from the skin and associated channel. In Tom's practice, he uses moxa for pain conditions, OB/GYN conditions, and for patients with low energy, fatigue, and digestive complaints.
Herbs are an important aspect of East Asian Medicine, where individual plant, animal, and mineral materials are combined in formulas for health complaints. Herbs are known to have similar pharmacological effects as prescription medication, and when prescribed properly, have less adverse reactions and side effects than drugs. Clinically, Chinese herbs are combined together in formulas, based on an individuals unique health history. For more information about herbs, CLICK the PICTURE, and check out the Custom Herbal Formulas page.
MASSAGE & Stretching
Massage and manual therapies are important in tandem with acupuncture to help reduce pain, reduce inflammation, and help restore functionality of joints and muscles. Acupuncture placed into a specific muscle can help to reduce the hypertonicity and spasming of that muscle, but massage is excellent for soothing the region of the body after the effects of the acupuncture. While acupuncture targets specific muscles, massage has a broad effect over an injured region. In regard to stretching, muscles work in teams to move a joint in a particular direction. When there is a joint injury, the muscles of the joint tighten to protect the joint from further injury while healing. This protective tightening can lead to pain of the joint and muscles. Stretching helps to relax these tight muscles, increase blood flow, and reduce pain in the joints.
Traditional Chinese concepts of health and wellness are focused on balance- balanced diet, balanced exercise, balance between work and rest, balanced sex lives, etc. The ancient Greek physician Hippocrates stated "let food be thy medicine." This idea is very important in Chinese Medicine- a proper balanced diet is important in the prevention or treatment of diseases. As part of your "aftercare homework" following acupuncture treatment, Tom may recommend specific dietary changes to help you cope and recover from your treated health condition. These changes may include eliminating certain inflammatory foods from your diet, adding certain foods for their nutritional contents, or adding a vitamin or nutraceutical supplement to help enhance your body's natural functions. Nutritional therapy is important to the treatment of every condition in the body, because our food is the basis of our cellular health, growth, and repair.
Cupping is the application of glass or plastic cups to the skin. With the glass cups, fire is used to create a vacuum in the cup which causes skin and underlying tissue to be pulled into the cup upon application. Cupping helps to increase blood flow and reduce inflammation in the region the cup is applied. Cupping is excellent for orthopedic issues where pain, stiffness, and spasms are present in muscle tissue. The increase in blood flow helps to dump metabolic waste from the muscles back into the bloodstream (where it will later be filtered by the liver) so that muscles can recover quickly from injuries. Cupping is associated with bright red to purple marks on the skin that look like bruises. These marks are not bruises, but a sign of the increased blood flow to the treated muscles. Cupping also helps to take pressure off of different nerve plexuses, making cupping an effective treatment for numbness/ tingling conditions related to compression of nerves.
Gua Sha (also called "coining") is the scraping of skin with a round-edged tool in order to increase blood flow and reduce inflammation. Gua Sha and Cupping have similar effects to the skin, including bright red to purple marks that indicate increased blood flow (not bruises). However, Gua Sha creates a different effect, essentially "ironing" of the muscle and fascia, helping to reduce adhesions in muscle and bone associated with chronic injury. Gua Sha has an excellent pain relieving effect and is thought to help the body "detoxify" by removing waste and inflammation from the muscles and fascia. Tom uses Gua Sha in his practice to treat orthopedic complaints, pain, and fatigue.
"Aftercare" is an important part of successful acupuncture treatment. While acupuncture, massage, and stretching will help to alleviate the pain associated with your condition or injury, corrective exercises help to further rehabilitate the affected tissues. After your acupuncture treatment, you may be given instruction on how to complete specific strengthening exercises, self stretches, or traditional Qi Gong exercise to help you recover from your health complaint and boost your overall health and vitality. In tandem with dietary changes and herbal remedies, corrective exercises help you to take control of your health and successful recovery.