Watch Phyllis Shapiro explain the benefits of acupuncture on ABC News

About Phyllis Shapiro

Phyllis Shapiro at work I earned my bachelor’s degree from the University of Pennsylvania in 1966. In 1996 I earned a Master of Science in Acupuncture and Chinese Herbology and a Master of Traditional Oriental Medicine from Pacific College of Oriental Medicine (PCOM) in New York City as a member of the first graduating class in New York State.

I am licensed by NYS to practice acupuncture, and I am Nationally Certified in both Acupuncture and Chinese Herbology – assuring my continuing study of the profession.

Raising three children and helping my parents through terminal illnesses, I became aware of the toxic side effects of many Western medications – and the over use of antibiotics which weaken the body’s natural immune system. I always knew I had to treat medical problems from a different perspective; I just didn’t know, at that time, what that would look like.

I became acquainted with acupuncture as an Auricular Detoxification Specialist in 1991 at Lincoln Hospital in the Bronx while I was getting a degree in Alcohol and Drug Counseling.

I was amazed at the effect a few small needles, barely inserted into points on the ear, had on the addict. The treatment allowed patients to sit calmly, speak softly and maintain a reasonable sleep schedule – all without any additional chemical intervention. I watched as hardened addicts regained active and purposeful lives.

When I learned that NYS would license whole body acupuncturists, my heart threw a party for my head. I knew this is what I was meant to do. It took 4 years of dedicated study to learn the more than 4000 year old medicine and techniques that boost the body’s own systems to heal themselves.

wtc In 2001, after terrorists crashed two aircraft into The World Trade Center, I was instrumental in establishing an Acupuncture Relief Station for FEMA 9–11 rescue teams at the Jacob K. Javits Center in Manhattan. Volunteer practitioners provided more than 3500 treatment to the search and rescue teams from 9/13 – 9/28 on round the clock shifts. The mutual appreciation between us and the workers on the “pile” was profound. I am still in contact with several of the FEMA medical staff.

In 2005 I worked with a medical technology company to create the MicroTherm machine which allows acupuncturists to use micro–stimulation as part of treatment and radio current to heat needles and in facial rejuvenation procedures.

Over the past 12 years, I have maintained a private practice in Manhattan, have been a professor and clinical supervisor at PCOM and was an acupuncture supervisor at the Hospital for Joint Diseases.

I am currently the acupuncture consultant at the Silvercrest Nursing and Rehabilitation Center in Queens.

I believe the balance, in Manhattan the latest “hot” treatments are for infertility and face lift along with accepted treatments for pain, and in Queens the treatment for sequelae of strokes, heart attacks and neurological problems, keeps me challenged and always up to date on the latest procedures.

Each part of my practice brings heartfelt satisfaction as pain is reduced, blood pressure brought down, pregnancy and births occur and patients are weaned off respirators and limbs become stronger. Early detection and treatment, of dysfunctions have my patients looking and feel better.

A personal goal is to have my patients be more in touch with their own bodies and be an active force in their own healing process.

I carry this medical knowledge with me as I visit my grandchildren in other states. When my 7 year old grandson gets hurt and I am there, he says, “Amma, put a seed on my ear to stop the pain!” He also advises me to start taking my “magic pills” if there are runny noses at his house.

I love what I do and hope to keep practicing for many years to come.