CE Pricing / Flex Credit

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Starts at $9.98 per contact hour
Min. Hours $$/Hr
4 hours $8.98
8 hours $7.98
12 hours $6.98
20 hours $5.98
30 hours $4.98


1.5 Contact Hours
Target Audience: Nurses, healthcare professionals, and interested individuals
Purpose/Goal: The outcome of this course is for the learner to describe the practice, theories, and clinical efficacy of acupuncture.
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The ancient Chinese healing practice of acupuncture has been used for thousands of years to treat many ailments, especially pain. Today, this therapy that addresses disharmony in the body, mind, and spirit is widely practiced throughout China and is used by millions of individuals in the United States and many other countries. This course explores the history of acupuncture, the theories involved in its practice (including yin and yang, qi, the meridian system, and causes of disharmony), the types and benefits of acupuncture, as well as possible complications and contraindications of the therapy and training issues.

Upon completion of the course, you will be able to do the following:

  • Describe the key historical developments related to acupuncture.
  • Explain yin and yang theory.
  • Discuss the energetic concept of qi.
  • Describe the meridian system.
  • Discuss causes of disharmony.
  • Describe types of acupuncture.
  • Identify the health benefits of acupuncture.
  • List possible complications and contraindications of acupuncture.
  • Identify training issues related to acupuncturists.

Acupuncture is one of the principle components (along with herbalism, massage, and other therapies) of an ancient system of medicine known as traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) (Mole, 2014). Acupuncture is a technique in which the practitioner stimulates specific points on the body, usually by inserting thin needles through the skin either manually or by electrical stimulation (Chiu, 2014; National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine [NCCIH], 2017c). Acupuncture may be combined with moxibustion for the treatment of many diseases. Moxibustion is a technique in which heat is applied to the acupoints through the burning of compressed, powdered herbal materials (Chiu, 2014).

The History of Acupuncture

Acupuncture is among the oldest healing practices in the world (NCCIH, 2017a). The term acupuncture, or needle puncture, is actually a European word invented by Willem Ten Rhyne, a Dutch physician who visited Nagasaki in Japan in the early part of the 17th century and saw the technique. The Chinese use the character “Chen” to describe acupuncture. The Chinese character literally means to “prick with a needle” (Lewith, 1998).

Traditional Chinese medicine practitioners have used acupuncture to influence health and healing for over 2,500 years. It has formed the theoretical basis of the medical systems developed in China and its neighboring countries of Japan, Korea, Taiwan, and Vietnam (Chiu, 2014; Mole, 2014). While Western medicine can be traced back to Hippocrates, Chinese acupuncture theory was fully developed by the end of the second century B.C. and undocumented evidence of tattoo marks on Tyrolean Iceman (dating back to 3300 BCE) coincide with acupuncture points used today (Chiu, 2014). The Chinese believe the practice of acupuncture began during the Stone Age when stone knives or sharp edged tools were used to puncture and drain abscesses. The Chinese character “Bian” means the use of sharp edged stones to treat disease. The Chinese character “Bi” is believed to be derivation of “Bian” and represents a disease of pain (Lewith, 1998).

Complete the course post exam (CE Test) with a score of 80% or greater. Complete all fields of the course evaluation form. Certificate of Completion is provided once the course post exam is passed per criteria above.

  • American Board of Managed Care Nursing
  • ANCC - American Nurses Credentialing Center
  • AOTA - American Occupational Therapy Association
  • ASWB - Association of Social Work Boards
  • California Board of Registered Nursing
  • California Department of Health, Aid, and Technician Certification Section
  • District of Columbia Board of Nursing
  • Florida Board of Nursing
  • Florida Board of Nursing - Certified Nursing Assistants
  • Florida Board of Respiratory Care
  • Florida Council of Dietetics and Nutrition
  • Florida Council of Licensed Midwifery
  • NAADAC - The National Association of Alcohol and Drug Abuse Counselors


Practice Level:


Content Focus:

Domain of OT

Course Expires:

December 10, 2020

  • Cyndie Koopsen, RN, BSN, MBA, HNB-BC, RN-BC, HWNC-BC
  • Caroline Young, MPH
Jurisdictional Requirements:

Continuing education (CE) licensing requirements vary by jurisdiction, are not well defined, and may change. These CE requirements may vary in terms of the number of hours required to the types of courses that must be taken. ALLEGRA Learning Solutions, LLC recommends you contact your licensing board or accrediting organization for the latest continuing education requirements of your state or territory. Compliance with CE requirements is the responsibility of the individual health care provider. Health care providers must understand the CE requirements in their jurisdictions, and be sure they are up-to-date on any rule changes that affect their license. For further information, please see our Accreditation Information.

Accommodations for Disabilities:

Every effort will be made to accommodate your special needs. To request accommodations, please contact us.

Conflicts of Interest and Relevant Financial Relationships:

The authors/planning committee members have no conflicts of interests or relevant financial relationships to declare relevant to this activity.

Commercial Support:

No commercial support has been received for this activity.

Non-endorsement of products:

Accreditation refers to recognition of continuing nursing education only and does not imply ALLEGRA Learning Solutions, LLC approval or endorsement of any commercial product.

Off-label Use of Products:

None of the authors intend to discuss off-label uses of drugs, mechanical devices, biologics, or diagnostics not approved by the FDA for use in the United States.