As Dr. Rathgeber explains, acupuncture speeds up the healing process, can be used for diagnosing conditions as well as treating them, and, best of all, is virtually non-invasive. No wonder its popularity in the equine world has grown tremendously in the last ten years. If you haven't yet had an opportunity to learn about it, this small book is a good place to start. Dr. Rathgeber writes with accuracy and brings to the book a great deal of current scientific research and clinical experience. The result is a book that contains a lot of good, basic information, but sounds a bit dry, like a textbook. The author makes up for this by the fact that she is part of Hagyard-Davidson-BcGee, PSC, the largest first-class equine veterinary practice of its kind in the world with 38 other equine veterinarians. Almost every one of them has referred cases to Dr. Rathgeber for acupuncture. From this she has acquired a wide spectrum of clinical experiences and has seen many last-hope cases turn around. Acupuncture most successfully is used to treat lameness, back problems, fertility and libido problems in horses. The author carefully explains the different modalities of acupuncture, such as dry needling, aquapuncture, moxibustion, electro-acupuncture, bleeding the acupoint, laser and implants. She also explains the rigors of certification by the International Veterinary Acupuncture Society, of which she is a member. This book is thoroughly referenced and clearly written by a veterinarian who is immersed in cutting-edge equine medicine, and that may be its biggest selling point. But what the book lacks is a sense of the bigger picture that acupuncture is a part of and the passion required to accomplish such an undertaking. She seems to defend acupuncture from a Western medicine's point of view, which is, in part, to miss the point. Read this book but don't stop there. For a more engrossing explanation of acupuncture and Traditional Chinese Medicine, try "The Web That Has No Weaver" by TJ Kaptchuk, listed in her recommended readings. Author Ronda Rathgeber, Ph.D., D.V.M., practices equine acupuncture at Hagyard-Davidson-BcGee, PSC. She lives in Lexington, KY and maintains a private practice that includes broodmares, foals and performance horses. (T.B.) Highlights - History of Acupuncture - General Principles of Acupuncture - Overview of Traditional Chinese Medicine - Acupuncture Points - What is a Meridian or Channel? - A Scientific Explanation of Acupuncture - Different Modalities of Acupuncture - Acupuncture as a Diagnostic Tool - Acupuncture for Specific Conditions - Cases Involving Acupuncture - Herbal Treatments.
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