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What our patients say


A sinus problem

Having suffered for several years with sinus problems I recently received a course of treatment from the above including acupuncture.

I found this to be a procedure without pain or discomfort, and one which has had lasting beneficial effects. I had previously been sceptical of any 'alternative' medicines, but would have no hesitation in recommending anyone to try this type of remedy.

To whom it may concern

I used to be extremely fit and went to the gym several times each week. On reaching the age of 30 I began to experience problems with my upper spine. I had always been one to get straight out of bed when I awoke but had a couple of mornings when I found that I simply couldn't move. In fact on each of these occasions it took over forty five minutes for me to be able to turn over! This came as a severe shock. From then onwards my back became increasingly sore and my energy began to disappear.

Eventually I went to my G.P. (a family friend) who took some blood samples and from these deduced that I has some problem with the ligaments along my spine. He also told me that it would take longer to heal than a broken bone. So I put up with it. Over a year later, with the condition worsening, I went back to my doctor. I explained some of my symptoms (pain centred on the 3rd and 4th thoracic vertebrae), extreme tiredness, difficulties with certain movements particularly bending and twisting of the neck. In general I felt very unwell.

He took more tests and, when the results came in, asked me to see him. He seemed concerned and explained that the tests showed that muscle or ligaments were disintegrating. He is very pragmatic and approachable. He told me that there was something wrong with me, that I had some form of auto-immune illness but he didn't know what it was.

I ended up being retired at 34! Eventually I was referred to a consultant who told me that I had ankylosing spondilitis. There may be a family history; my great grandfather was confined to a wheelchair for much of his life. He seemed to have arthritis in his spine.

There is (allegedly) no cure for A.S. and no real treatment. Sufferers may be lucky enough to find a rare consultant who is interested in the condition and who has access to some experimental medication, but the general advice is to exercise and take painkillers. I'm averse to the latter (believing that this would just lead to addiction given the fact the condition is lifelong) and it is almost impossible to take regular exercise when one has no energy. I had had some success with acupuncture a few years ago but nothing permanent. No other treatment has ever had any real effect.

In March 2004 I was lucky enough to meet a Chinese medical practioner, Dr Ling Jin, from Sheffield. At our first meeting she told me things about myself and my health which I hadn't disclosed - a very good sign. She had also been treating someone else I who I know and the results had been excellent so I had no doubts about her ability. She treated me straight away.

From then on Doctor Ling has been treating me in Sheffield initially twice a week, now once a week.

She treats me with acupuncture and with herbal medicine, which tastes pretty awful. She is exceptionally skilled and is the fifth generation of her family to practice Traditional Chinese Medicine.

When Dr. Ling was away in China her colleague Dr. Xue Mei treated me. Her expertise is different; she did a lot of massage on my shoulder muscles (they often go into spasm - this is the most painful aspect of the condition) as well as some other treatments such as cupping. Her treatments were extremely beneficial. Both doctors are very eager to help.

The initial results were very impressive but we all knew that this would be a long haul. As time progressed the improvements became more gradual until, just before Christmas, my neck seemed suddenly to be right again after all these years! It is difficult to describe how extraordinary this feels. At the same time my energy levels have suddenly become much, much better. Dr. Ling is now concentrating on the most damaged part of my spine but is actually using acupuncture on all the joints of my spine. I feel as if this wonderful lady has given me my life back.

The prognosis for sufferers of ankylosing spondilitis isn't good. The disease doesn't kill anyone but can devastate their quality of life. It can just burn out leaving the sufferer with a deformation to the spine or continue until the spine is shaped like a question mark. But I am convinced that Traditional Chinese Medicine in the hands of a very skilled doctor can treat this and maybe even cure it, if caught in time.

And Dr. Ling Jin is such a doctor. I have no hesitation in recommending her to anyone.

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