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X-ray Reveals Hundreds of Gold Needles Around Woman’s Knees

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Woman’s knees filled with hundreds of gold needles

X-Ray Reveals Hundreds of Gold Needles in Woman’s Knees

A 65-year-old South Korean woman complained of severe joint pain in her knees, and when doctors investigated through an x-ray, they soon found out why.  The woman’s knees were filled with hundreds of tiny, gold acupuncture needles embedded in her tissue.  The woman had previously been diagnosed with osteoarthritis and underwent acupuncture treatment, or the ancient Chinese medicine practice of inserting fine needles into meridians in the body to relieve pain or remedy ailments.  The needles were apparently left in her body on purpose to “stimulate” her tissue.

Leaving Objects in the Body is Never a Good Idea

Despite this woman’s gold mine and its alleged “healing properties”, doctors warn that it is never a good idea to leave a foreign object in the body.  The human body will quickly launch an attack on what it deems an offending foreign object in the body, including creating inflammation or fibrous tissue around the object.  Unfortunately, when a foreign object can not find its way out of the body, it can lead to abscesses and infection.  In addition, needles left in the body can make it difficult for doctors to read x-rays, and patients with needles also cannot have an MRI.  During an MRI, the needles may move and accidentally damage an artery.

Millions of Americans Treat With Acupuncture

An estimated 1.3 million adult Americans were treated with acupuncture in 2007, with an additional 150,000 children also treated.  Little medical evidence supports the notion that acupuncture is effective in treating medical ailments, but the practice is widely used as a treatment for painful joints.  Furthermore, it is not uncommon for acupuncturists in Asian countries to insert fine gold threads around the joint to “stimulate” the tissue.