The use of alternative medicines is rising not just in the United States, but worldwide. Due to the popularity of such treatments, the efficiency of these alternative medicines is often questioned. While the effectiveness of certain alternative medical practices can be determined through the use of randomized control trials (RTCs), it can not only be difficult, but lack efficiency with most alternative medical practices. Acupuncture is an ancient art of healing that dates back to at least 2,500 years. It has been widely practiced in China and many other Asian countries. Only recently has acupuncture made its way into the western world. Acupuncture accentuates on the natural healing of the body. It involves stimulating acupuncture points by the insertion of very fine, solid, metallic needles. Acupuncture is gaining popularity as numerous claims are being made to its validity and effectiveness. Although many studies and experiments regarding acupuncture have been done, the scientific basis of the principles of this alternative approach still remains unclear. .
Traditional acupuncture theory, that energy flows within the body along lines known as channels and that to treat diseases, needles are inserted in specific points along these channels with the intention of restoring energy flow to a state of balance, has no plausible biochemical rationale therefore not having any real scientific validity. Many people stated how through the use of alternative medicine, such as acupuncture, their suffering and pain from illness or disease has been alieved. Now a days, acupuncture is being used to "treat" a number of current issues from a simple migraine or back pain to various forms of addiction, such as alcohol, nicotine, or cocaine addiction. In focusing on acupuncture as our example, we can see how many alternative medicine practices compromise a massive and diverse group of treatments, but also observe the efficiency of randomized clinical trials in testing the validity of acupuncture's claims.