Kingsfoil Acupuncture Services, Tiffany A. Diab, DVM, cVMA


What is Acupuncture?

Acupuncture is an ancient Chinese medical practice that involves placing metal needles in the skin at specific points in order to stimulate a desired neurophysiologic response peripherally, autonomically, and centrally. This is also known as neuroanatomical modulation.

Who is Kingsfoil Acupuncture Services?

Kingsfoil Acupuncture Services is a private LLC owned by Dr. Tiffany A. Diab. She is a licensed veterinarian in the state of Colorado. Dr. Diab has been trained in Medical Acupuncture under Dr. Narda Robinson, a well known expert in the field of complementary medicine and pain management. Kingsfoil Acupuncture operates out of several animal hospitals in the area but maintains its own autonomy. This means KAS handles its own scheduling, equipment overhead, and invoicing. Any questions or concerns for KAS should be sent directly to them via the provided email address and/or phone number.

How is Medical Acupuncture Different from Traditional Chinese Acupuncture?

While Traditional Chinese Acupuncture relies on somewhat ambiguous concepts such as “Qi”, “energy”, and “stagnation”, Medical Acupuncture seeks to treat patients in light of current understandings of neuroanatomy and physiology. After a medical acupuncturist reaches a diagnosis via a thorough physical and myofascial exam as well as thru any relevant diagnostics (labwork, radiographs, etc), she selects stimulation methods shown to repair nerve tissue at the site of damage and facilitate communication throughout the neural network.

What Is Acupuncture Used For?

Acupuncture can be used for just about anything! In fact, there is more clinical evidence supporting the use of acupuncture and related techniques in dogs than in humans! Because acupuncture works by neuromodulating both the parasympathetic and sympathetic nervous systems, it is in essence stimulating the body towards homeostasis and empowering a “heal thyself” dynamic.

Following is a non inclusive list of conditions that may benefit from acupuncture:

  • Osteoarthritis
  • Post-operative therapy for Cruciate Repair
  • Hip Dysplasia
  • Terminal Cancer Pain
  • Intervertebral Disk Disease
  • Lick Granulomas
  • Feline Psychogenic Alopecia
  • Allergic Dermatitis
  • Otitis Externa (in conjunction with Antibiotics)
  • Traumatic Nerve Injury
  • Epilepsy (Seizures)
  • Facial Nerve Paralysis
  • Feline Inappropriate Elimination Disorder
  • Urinary or Fecal Incontinence
  • Respiratory Disorders
  • Asthma
  • Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease
  • Chronic intractable diarrhea and/or constipation
  • Inflammatory Bowel Disease
  • Endocrine Disorder

What Does An Acupuncture Appointment Entail?

First and foremost, the medical acupuncturist will perform a thorough physical and myofascial exam on your pet. She will ask you about any previous medical history, what diagnostics have been performed, and any medications or supplements your pet is currently taking. This evaluation time will also allow your pet to relax and become accustomed to the acupuncturist’s presence and touch.

Next the medical acupuncturist will discuss the results of her findings with you. She may recommend some Western diagnostics as well as discuss with you the possible benefits of acupuncture for your pet’s condition. It is important to realize that acupuncture is NOT a “silver bullet” and must be often combined with Western medical practices in order to achieve successful treatment.

Finally, she will place anywhere from 5-20 needles at specific points in your pet’s skin. These needles typically will remain in place for 5-30 minutes. Depending on the temperament and sensitivity of your pet, for the first visit she may elect to place only a few needles or to use a smaller size to allow your pet to become accustomed to the sensation. The number and size of needle can often be increased in subsequent treatments. Occasionally a pet is too sensitive for acupuncture in any form – in this rare occasion the acupuncturist may recommend trying other less stimulating methods such as medical massage or cold laser therapy.

Are There Any Side Effects I Need to Be Aware Of?

Acupuncture is a safe and relatively non-invasive medical intervention. There are some things you as the owner need to be aware of though:

  • Although they are tiny, needles are needles. Some pets will not react well to having even the tiniest diameter needles placed. The acupuncturist’s goal first and foremost is to not cause harm. If she feels that it is causing undue stress or danger to you or your pet to perform acupuncture then she will stop.
  • Occasionally a needle when placed will bump against a skin capillary and cause some bleeding when removed. It is nothing to be concerned about and does not negatively affect the acupuncture session.
  • Many pets once the first few needles have been placed will relax and some even go to sleep!
  • About 10% of the canine population are considered “non-responders” to acupuncture. This means after 6-8 treatments they show no improvement whatsoever. Of the 90% who do respond 50% of those have a very good to excellent response. The other 50% have variable degrees of response.
  • Typically, the medical acupuncturist will recommend at least 4 weekly sessions with your pet. Many conditions need at least this many sessions before a noticeable improvement is seen. For those pets who respond favorably many can be maintained on a single session every 4-12 week.