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Tibetan Acupuncture And Massage

Big furry spider with egg sack in my bathroom

The morning after returning from my Indrahar Pass trek, I awoke with a giant, furry spider in my bathroom, aching right shoulder, stabbing pain in the area of my right ribs, and mild soreness in my legs.

The soreness in my right shoulder felt as though I was carrying a heavy bag, even when I was lying down.

The sharp pain in my side was only a problem when I coughed, sneezed or laughed, but it caused me to keel over in agony without fail.

A Royal Enfield motorcycle parked outside The Peace Cafe

I was in sad shape when Steve stopped by for lunch.

I wanted to tell him about the trek and share my photos so we went to the nearby Peace Cafe.

Steve is a funny guy, so I had to explicitly tell him not to make me laugh.

While I wasn't complaining much, it didn't take long for my body language to give away the discomfort I felt.

We cut lunch short and he picked up some Paracetamol (aspirin-like drug) from a pharmacy and met me back at my room where I was already back in bed.

I was in enough pain to wonder whether I should see a doctor.

He recommended rest, and given he had trekked to Everest Base Camp without a porter back in April, I trusted his advice.

The Paracetamol took the edge off the pain, but it was hard to be comfortable, especially at night.

I felt as though my arm should be in a sling to relieve the aching, and I had to sleep on my left side.

I was so glad I made the effort to find a new room with a soft mattress.



Upper McLeod Ganj as seen from my hotel balcony

After two days, I felt as though I could handle a Tibetan massage.

I'd been meaning to try acupuncture, so I combined the two and visited a Tibetan doctor whose office was in the building adjacent to my hotel.

She recommended three sessions given my injury was new. I was doubtful the pain could be alleviated in just three days.

The first session was limited to 25 minutes of acupuncture.

Three needles were poked into my shoulder, with a fourth and fifth in each elbow.

Unsure whether to credit the acupuncture, I found myself able to spend a few hours on the internet before feeling a lot of pain again by bedtime.

The second session began with a 25-minute back and shoulder massage, followed by acupuncture.

Again, I felt better after the session, though it was even more noticeable the next day.

To my surprise, I felt 100% again after the third session.

Unfortunately, I have no way to know whether the pain would've dissipated as fast on its own, or whether the massage helped more than the acupuncture (or vice versa).

Planning a trip? Go Backpacking recommends:

Angelita Buzzelle

Friday 29th of October 2010

Good Post. Better then the simillar post I found last Wednesday on Blogspot


Wednesday 29th of September 2010

My mother had the same thing in her shoulders for a very long time. The only thing that turned out to help was acupuncture. I'm certain that it helps a lot, and combining that with massage is probably even better!


Sunday 3rd of October 2010

Sofia - I would definitely consider acupuncture again in the future based on my experience in India.


Monday 11th of January 2010

It was definitely the acupuncture!!! ;-)


Monday 26th of January 2009

O_O! GYA!! Flesh rotting spiders! *runs*

. raul apolos

Monday 14th of July 2008

that spider looks a bit freaky...much like brown recluse and the damage they cause it's pretty ugly. here is a link to the damage they can cause (this pic was taken 9 days after the bite):

glad it didn't bite you! i love your blog! btw, im getting ready to plan my rtw trip also and i have a few questions for you. hopefully, you'll get some free time soon. :)

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