Please keep in mind, providers are not created equally and we are all different in the type of work and the level of our training. Our prices reflect a great value for the level of training and effectiveness of the skill sets we combine. 

* Please Note we do not perform consultations as there is very little we can address about treatment without performing an ecxamination (touching you) - the initial vist is your consultation once we workup a viable diagnosis and treatment plan *

Initial Visit $160 - 60 minutes (Intake and Treatment)

Followup Visits: After Initial Visit 

  Basic Acupuncture / Orthopedic-Needling - $65    

             (needling  only)

  Complex  Acupuncture $80

    (+moxa, electric stimulation, guasha, cupping/ graston)

  Orthopedic Needling Only - $65

 Orthopedic Needling /   & Active Release - $80

      (for 1 region only- and associated kinetic chain)

  Active Release (ART) $60 -20mins (1 Body Region)

 Orthopedic Needling / Acu. & ART Combined  $90

Followup Herbal Exam $50 + cost of herbs (separate)

Do We Take Insurance?

Your plan must have acupuncture benefits and may only cover our acupuncture / needling work. An uncovered service fee will be charged for ART & Functional Movement therapies if they are requested.

We are in-network providers with: Blue Shield, Optum and United Healthcare, ACN. 

We DO NOT accept Blue Cross, Sharp, ASHP, Cigna or Kaiser. We do not bill secondary insurances.

*Medical, Medicare and Tricare do not cover our services*

Insurance Does not include (ART or Herb cost)

UnitedHealthcare Medicare Solutions (West)

UnitedHealthcare SignatureValue 

Premera Blue Cross

Sutter Health Plus 

California Schools VEBA 

Easy Choice Health Plan 

Blue Shield,  Blue Shield CA, BS Covered California (current)

Optum Healthcare / ACN

These plans only cover acupuncture and not adjunctive tx.

Medicare does not cover any of our services.

We do not have the time nor people resources to bill secondary insurance, if you have a Medicare primary and a secondary with benefits you will need to pay cash then submit against your secondary for reimbursement.

We are not in network with the following and do not accept their coverage: ASHP, Kaiser, Healthnet.

We do accept Health Spending Accounts (HSA) and Flex Spending Accounts for ALL our Services.

We do accept PPO insurance plans with acupuncture benefits with a reminder that  these plans usually pay for Acupuncture only. 

How should i prepare for my first visit?

Please note your first visit is for examination and treatment. We perform diagnosis and perhaps light treatment in terms of forming a concise diagnosis and evaluate whether we can accept you as a patient. From the diagnosis we shall have a report of findings to discuss what we found and what treatment would look like. If time allows and we are confident in your diagnosis we will perform treatment.

Dress accordingly- wear loose comfortable clothing that will allow for exposure of your effected are. Be prepared to expose your extremities up to the shoulder or mid-thigh. You may be asked to remove clothing and put on a medical gown if treatment requires an area of the torso to be exposed.

We will focus on one area per treatment- it is very important to control variables and focus our efforts to truly evaluate our effectiveness and your response to treatment.  

How Many Treatments Will I Need?     

We DO NOT accept Blue Cross, Sharp,ASHP, Cigna or Kaiser.

*Medical, Medicare and Tricare do not cover our services*

We will provide you with a super bill to turn into your own insurance company for reimbursement. This allows us to focus on providing the best care possible.

We do not bill secondary insurances but will provide you with a super bill which you can submit for faster reimbursement.

Please note, ART® is not considered standard therapy and will not be reimbursed by your insurance. It is considered an additional service and will require an additional fee per treatment beyond your insurance copay or coinsurance if you want it along with your acupuncture treatment.

Why should I see an acupuncturist?

There are four main reasons patients consider acupuncture treatment:

Most commonly, patients have a condition that does not respond to conventional care. They seek a treatment option that can effectively provide a solution to their healthcare issue.

Conventional treatment often requires drugs with undesirable side effects or an unwanted surgery to treat the condition; therefore an alternative medical option is sought.

Patients are taking many western drugs that are expensive, have side effects or interfere with one another. Often Chinese medicine can treat these conditions so that the drugs can be withdrawn.

Patients seek a natural, holistic medical approach to healthcare. 

Can acupuncture help me even if I feel healthy?

Yes, absolutely. Many patients come in for regular maintenance treatments to stay in 'tip-top' condition so they can fully enjoy life. Acupuncture is a powerful preventative measure to keep patients healthy throughout the year. Acupuncturists see subtle signs of disease processes at work before symptoms begin to interfere with daily life. Chinese medicine effectively addresses these issues, preventing future problems from occurring. Because acupuncture treatments are so deeply relaxing, many patients find regular, maintenance treatments beneficial for stress relief.                       

How does acupuncture work?

Traditional Chinese Medicine is based on an energetic model rather than the biochemical model of Western medicine. The ancient Chinese recognized the vital energy inherent in all living things. This energy is called Qi (pronounced chee). Over thousands of years of practice, the ancient physicians discovered a system of cyclic energy flowing in the human body along specific pathways called channels or meridians. Each channel is associated with a particular physiological system and internal organ. When the Qi in the pathways becomes obstructed, deficient or excessive, disease occurs. The corresponding organs and muscles do not get their necessary flow of energy and nutrients to properly perform their physiological functions.

The channels communicate with the surface of the body at specific locations called acupuncture points. Needles inserted in these points influence the Qi that flows to internal organs. Acupuncture can also affect specific areas of pain associated with injury or trauma. A needle inserted near the area of overstrained muscle or tendon will adjust the flow of Qi and nutrients to that area, thereby reducing pain and accelerating the healing process.

The acupuncture points have various functions, like stopping pain, stimulating immune function, or resolving phlegm (for coughs or runny noses). There are even points with empirical functions, like treating rashes or constipation. Other points are chosen with regard to location; for example, using points on the shoulder, knee or back to treat pain. 

Using a system of pulse and tongue diagnosis, coupled with findings obtained by inquiring about related symptoms and physical exam, the acupuncturist determines the pathology affecting Qi (energy) flow to internal organs, muscles, skin and joints. The acupuncturist will then develop a treatment protocol to resolve the patient's condition.

From western biomedical research, we understand that acupuncture influences a number of physiological functions such as release of endorphins (natural pain killing chemicals) by the brain, restoration of proper circulation in diseased areas, and stimulation of hormonal glands and immune system function. Research into the effects of acupuncture is still young. Scientists discover more information every year that helps us understand more fully how acupuncture works. 

How many treatments will I need?

In Chinese Medicine, we speak in terms of courses of treatments. One course is considered ten to twelve acupuncture treatments or weeks of herbal therapy. Clinical response to acupuncture treatment is individual, but there are some generalities acupuncturists expect. Some people will notice improvement after a single treatment. Others take longer to respond as acupuncture requires a cumulative effect. Most patients begin noticing changes within one to three treatments. After five to seven visits both the patient and the practitioner should feel confident that the treatment is effective. Acute conditions may be fairly well resolved at this point. Chronic conditions take longer. Excepting continual, longstanding problems (such as allergies ), most conditions are resolved within a course to fifteen treatments.   

How frequently are visits spaced?

Generally patients are seen on a weekly basis. For some acute conditions, such as severe pain or extremely itchy, uncomfortable rashes, it may be necessary to come twice a week for the first two to three weeks, until symptoms are contained. As the condition improves, visits are spaced farther apart: every two, and later three weeks or monthly. On average, patients come weekly for about eight visits, and then begin decreasing the frequency of visits as symptoms become more intermittent and later disappear.
Once the condition has resolved, many patients choose to continue treatment for maintenance and preventative care. These maintenance visits can be monthly or quarterly, or semi-annually, depending on the patient's goals. 

Do I need to keep coming after my symptoms are gone?

Generally speaking, once symptoms no longer occur, a clinical cure is achieved. Depending on the nature and history of the disorder, future treatments are usually not necessary to prevent recurrence. Exceptions are for chronic conditions that tend to recur, such as back pain and allergic problems.                    

What are maintenance tune-ups?

Some patients like to come on a monthly or quarterly basis for preventative care. These types of treatments are nicknamed 'tune-ups'. Just as we get regular maintenance on our cars, our bodies need regular maintenance to keep them healthy, too. Acupuncturists see subtle signs of disease processes and can address these issues in a few number of treatments, thus avoiding the development of more serious health problems that require a longer series to treat. These preventative care visits are especially important for patients with long-standing, chronic conditions that tend to recur, such as back pain or allergic problems . Because acupuncture treatments are so deeply relaxing, many patients find regular maintenance treatments beneficial for stress relief.             

What if I can't come for regular acupuncture treatments?

Herbal therapy is an effective option for those who cannot come regularly for acupuncture visits. Some patients opt for Chinese herbal formulas instead of acupuncture treatment. Combining the modalities of herbs and acupuncture creates a synergist treatment pair, each increasing the power of the other. Herbal therapy can fill in for the interval between acupuncture treatments, allowing some patients to decrease the frequency of acupuncture treatment.

TCM (Traditional Chinese Medical) herbalists use herbs instead of drug therapy to address problems internally. In fact, many conditions, such as gynecological problems, dermatology and immune system disorders require herbs for effective treatment. Pain conditions require regular acupuncture treatments for resolution of symptoms.                 

Does acupuncture hurt?

The vast majority of patients do not consider acupuncture a painful procedure. Some patients feel a slight 'Qi' sensation when the needle is inserted: most feel nothing at all. These 'Qi sensations' range from warmth or tingling, to a brief ache or heaviness in the area being needled. Qi sensations are generally only felt on one or two of the acupuncture points. They indicate favorable results from the acupuncture treatment, as Qi has been strongly contacted. By and large patients describe these sensations as fleeting and the treatment experience as deeply relaxing. In fact, many patients find acupuncture so relaxing that they fall asleep during treatment and go into a dreamy state induced by the endorphins released during treatments.  

Are the needles safe?

Yes. Acupuncturists use sterile, disposable needles. They are used once and then disposed of in biohazard containers. These containers are sent to a medical waste management company for proper disposal according to federal laws and regulations.

Are there any side effects to acupuncture?

One of the reasons that acupuncture has been so well embraced in the West may have to do with its low rate of side effects. "For a medical procedure, you almost cannot get anything that is more benign," says James Dowden, Executive Administrator of the American Academy of Medical Acupuncture. "About the worst thing that can happen is you won't get better."
In it's landmark, 1997 Consensus Statement on Acupuncture, the NIH (National Institutes of Health) reported, "One of the advantages of acupuncture is that the incidence of adverse effects is substantially lower than that of many drugs or other accepted medical procedures used for the same conditions." (Acupuncture. NIH Consens Statement 1997 Nov 3-5; 15 (5): 9.)

In 2001, the British Medical Journal (vol. 323, no.7311) published the results of two large-scale studies showing that the benefits of acupuncture far outweigh negative side effects of treatment. The few post-treatment complaints were minor and short-lived, ranging from bruising to needle pain and lasting less than a week, with no serious adverse events noted. In an accompanying editorial, the journal concluded that complications from acupuncture are "remarkably rare and transient" [ranging from 0.1 to 0.7 percent] especially when compared with the rate of adverse drug reactions or prescribing errors in primary care medicine, estimated at 0.5 to 6 percent. 

Is acupuncture covered by insurance?

Some insurance companies will reimburse for acupuncture treatments. Consult your insurance provider to determine the terms of coverage of your policy. If your policy includes acupuncture benefits, we will provide you with an insurance coded receipt that you may submit to your insurance company for reimbursement. ART therapy will incur an additional service fee.

I want to begin for treatment, what do I do next?

Call (888) 871-88891 to schedule an initial consultation with Michael WoodworthMS, LAc. The initial consultation consists of a comprehensive health evaluation, a Traditional Chinese Medical diagnosis of your condition and a prognosis for treatment. A treatment plan can then be developed that will best meet your needs. 

What should I wear for the acupuncture treatments?

Wear loose fitted, comfortable clothing. You might want to bring a tank top and shorts to allow the acupuncturist easy access to the body. Most of the points needled are on the torso and limbs, below the elbows and knees. Exceptions are for pain, where local points will be used in the affected area, such as the shoulder.                           

Should I keep my appointment if I'm sick?

Yes. Acupuncture and Chinese herbs are highly effective for treating acute conditions, such as colds and flus, stomach viruses and headaches. Patients report immediate improvement in symptoms after acupuncture treatment or commencing herbal therapy. An oft-repeated phrase by happy patients is, "As soon as I started taking the herbs I felt better!"

Many patients call immediately to schedule a treatment when they first notice cold or flu symptoms. These include healthcare practitioners who don't want to get their patients sick, business professionals who are too busy for a sick day or two, and patients who are chronically ill and want to 'get this one over with, quickly'.

So if you're sick, call your acupuncturist and make and appointment. If you have an appointment scheduled, keep it. If you're concerned about being contagious to your practitioner, request an herbal consultation instead of a treatment.                     

Are there different styles of acupuncture?

Chinese medicine is over 5,000 years old. During that time, many individual styles have developed.fThese include Japanese style, Five Elements, Korean hand technique, French auricular (ear acupuncture), Daoist and Tibetan styles of acupuncture. We are trained in several approaches so as to find the best system for each individual and their particular condition.

Is an acupuncturist a doctor?

In the broad sense of the word, yes, an acupuncturist is a doctor. Acupuncturists diagnose and treat disease, as does a western medical doctor or chiropractor. However, the term 'doctor' also includes those who have been formally educated at the doctorate level.

Acupuncture is medical field new to the US and thus is in its' early phases of growth and development. The first two 4,000 hour doctorial programs in oriental medicine only recently began in 2004.  It will be some years before the doctorate degree becomes the standard for entry into the Oriental medical field. Currently, graduates of acupuncture colleges must complete a master's level program. Programs such as Pacific College of Oriental Medicine's 3,350 hour Master's of Science in Traditional Oriental Medicine  are among the most rigorous training available to acupuncturists.

As in most states, California acupuncture licensing law grants the title of Licensed Acupuncturist to acupuncture practitioners. The law only allows licensees to use the Dr. title if s/he holds a doctorate degree in the field of medicine.

What kind of education and training do acupuncturists receive?

The early acupuncture college programs in the US were typically two years in length. At that time, not many books on TCM had been translated or written in English, so the early students received much of their material orally from more experienced practitioners. Since that time, acupuncture colleges have proliferated in the US, the programs have increased in length, and a great amount of scholarly literature and clinical manuals have been published in English about Chinese medicine. There are now approximately 60 accredited and candidate acupuncture colleges in the US, and the master's degree level is required for state licensure.

Accredited master's level programs must be at least three years in length and at least 2,200 hours for Oriental Medicine (includes acupuncture and Chinese herbology), or 1,700 hours for acupuncture only programs. State laws vary regarding minimum length of study and content of programs they require for licensing acupuncturists. California is known for its especially rigorous requirements. Beginning in 2005, CA required graduates to have a minimum of 3,000 hours at an accredited acupuncture college. By this point in time most California acupuncture colleges had already increased their course curriculums to 2,700 and up to 3,350 hours at the more challenging programs.

Michael Woodworth, MS, LAc attended New England School of Acupuncture (NESA) for two years before transferring to Pacific College of Oriental Medicine (PCOM) in San Diego, California. P MSTOM graduates of PCOM receive over 3,200 hours of classroom instruction and clinical internship. The curriculum, which includes more than 700 hours of western bio-medical sciences, over 1,300 hours in oriental medical theory, herbology and treatment techniques, and more than 1,000 hours of clinical training and internships, requires four years of accelerated, year-round studies to complete.

Michael actually had  five years of study (totaling 3,500 hours) as he attended NESA in Watertown,MA and focussed on Japanese Acupuncture and herbs before coming to San Diego and studying TCM and herbology.

As you can see on our about us page, Michael is continually studying with world renowned providers and you would be hard pressed to find any provider who undergoes as much study and training in any discipline. He is completely committed to his clients and craft.

What are the licensing and certification requirements for acupuncturists?

The answer to this question varies, depending upon the state in which the acupuncturist is licensed. Most states, including North Carolina, require acupuncturists to pass the NCCAOM (National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine) acupuncture certification exam. The NCCAOM certifications are the gold standard of certification in the Oriental medical field. NCCAOM offers several different certifications: Acupuncture, Chinese herbology, Oriental bodywork therapy (Tui Na massage) and the comprehensive certification: Oriental Medicine.

In order to sit for the NCCAOM exam, one must have graduated from an accredited acupuncture college, and be certified in Clean Needle Technique by the CCAOM (Council of Colleges of Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine). As part of the certification process, NCCAOM verifies transcripts and graduation status from accredited acupuncture colleges, and Clean Needle Technique certification. NCCAOM exams test for adequate depth of knowledge and clinical expertise a diplomat must have in order to practice in the various disciplines of Oriental medicine. Oriental Medicine certification candidates must have completed required coursework in acupuncture, Chinese herbology as well as western, biomedical sciences, Tui Na massage, nutrition and Chinese dietary therapy, Tai Qi and Qi Gong (Chinese style meditative exercises used for therapeutic purposes). Michael Woodworth, MS, LAc was board certified by NCCAOM in Oriental Medicine in 2005.                  

Moreover, Michael maintins his California State licensing which is notable the most difficult and rigorous of any states requirements and widely acknowledged as being far more demanding and difficult than the standard NCCAOM exams.

How do I know if my Chinese herbalist is qualified?

Though most states include Chinese herbology in their licensed acupuncturists' scope of practice, licensure only requires that candidates have graduated from a 1,700 acupuncture program which does not include instruction in Chinese herbology. Only on rare occasions do states require practitioners be board certified in Chinese Herbology by NCCAOM. California requires practitioners to pass their state board exam rearding Chinese Herbal medicine. Prospective patients interested in Chinese herbal therapy should inquire whether the proposed herbalist has graduated from an Oriental Medicine program (includes instruction in Chinese herbology) and is a NCCAOM diplomat in Chinese Herbology (board certification ensuring adequate education and training in Chinese herbology) or has state licensure requiring extensive herbal training such as California.

Another telling question to ask a prospective herbalist is whether s/he uses a raw or granulated herbal pharmacy.  The herbalist has the most flexibility in writing and dosing herbal prescriptions when using raw and granulated herbs. These methods allow the herbalist to specifically tailor the prescription to the patient's presenting symptoms. An inexperienced herbalist does not have the necessary knowledge of Chinese herbal medicine to write his/her own prescriptions, and therefore will prescribe manufactured formulas, called 'patent herbs' instead.

Michael Woodworth MSTOM, LAc is highly educated and experienced in the practice of Chinese herbology. Michael attended Pacific College of Oriental Medicine (PCOM), well known for the rigor and competency of its herbal studies program. PCOM's MSTOM program includes 400 hours of classroom instruction in Chinese herbology, as part of the 3,200 hour MSTOM degree program. After graduating PCOM, Michael attended three years of additional classes in Chinese herbology with Dr. Jimmy Chang. Michael has completed extensive studies with the ICEAM organization lead by Dr. Arnaud Versluys who is a world renowned M.D. and PHD instructor in the classics of Chinese Medicine.

What is a Medical Acupuncturist?

This is an important question of great concern in the Oriental medical profession. Medical acupuncturists are MD's who have taken a 100-300 hour course in acupuncture (often at UCLA) allowing them to practice on patients. (Chiropractors are also legally allowed to practice acupuncture after completing a 300-hour course.) They do not have the extensive education and training in Oriental medicine NCCAOM certified practitioners receive.

NCCAOM certified practitioners must have graduated from an accredited acupuncture college with a minimum of two years and 1,700 hours for Acupuncture certification, or 2,200 hour for Chinese Herbology or Oriental Medicine certifications. (Oriental Medicine is a comprehensive certification demonstrating knowledge and training in acupuncture, Chinese herbology, western biomedical sciences, Chinese dietary therapy, Tui Na massage, Tai Qi and Qi Gong. [What are the licensing and certification requirements for acupuncturists?]  However, most acupuncture college programs are considerably longer, taking three to four years of fulltime study to complete. California acupuncture colleges adhere to especially stringent laws, requiring 3,000 hours of education and clinical training, of which 2,000+ hours must be in the discipline of oriental medical theory. 

Of even greater concern is the 300-hour course for MD's and chiropractors was designed to give medical researchers the appropriate background necessary to develop and interpret studies on acupuncture. The Medical Acupuncture certification was not designed to meet the educational requirements and training neccessary to treat patients. If your doctor provides Medical Acupuncture services, inquire whether s/he is at the minimum certified by NCCAOM, or better yet- has passed the most rigorous and demanding requirements in the country- The California Acupuncturist Licensing Exam (CALE).

Michael Woodworth Offers Acupuncture & Active Release Techniques To Oceanside And San Diego CA.