Q: Dear Dr. Mao,
I had acupuncture a week ago for severe headaches, neck pain, chronic sore throat, and chronic earaches—pains I have lived with for ten years. Since the day of treatment, my pain has been 10 times worse than what I usually experience. Is this normal?
A: Although it is generally true that sometimes symptoms may get worse for several treatments before subsiding, severe pain that lasts more that few days or worsens is a sign of concern. Discuss the situation with your practitioner. If the pain becomes unbearable or other complications arise, such as headaches, dizziness, numbness, nausea, vomiting or blurred vision, contact a physician or an emergency center immediately.