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I came to acupuncture in desperation. It wasn't that I was opposed to acupuncture, I just didn't know it could help ME. Last April, I realized I just wasn't healing properly - I'd had a sore throat for two months, but I was also trying to heal from a car accident, some other medical issues and depression. I was sick, I was in pain, and I was very, very sad. I was so anxious, I didn't know if I could stay there for the treatment!


Thus began a transformation I can still scarcely believe.


But every day I check to see if all the changes are real, and they are.


Two days after the first session, I realized that a big, three-inch ugly raised scar I had been wearing for three years had diminished drastically. Shocked, I kept checking, thinking it was all a dream. I eventually had my husband confirm that indeed, the scar was smaller, much smaller! Even near GONE in some places. He shared my amazement. That visual, tangible "proof" propelled me forward with my treatments, but there were other changes too which I couldn't ignore.


As a matter of fact, going to acupuncture became an adventure! Within a few weeks, I no longer needed my anxiety medicine. My depression lifted. My cold went away. My energy grew to new levels. I even overcame a life long phobia (something around which I organized my entire existence for 35 years) - something I never thought I'd be free of.


A year into it now, I recognize that acupuncture led me to a better quality of life - better than I ever could have imagined for myself prior to starting treatment. I went in to "heal better" and I did. Oh, how I did.


My thanks to Kim for listening and guiding me. My thanks to CAMA for making it available to me - a broke graduate student. All-encompassing, life-long thanks...


V.B. March 2012

I had heard from a friend of mine about the benefits of acupuncture.


It was hard to actually take the step of scheduling an appointment with an accupuncturist, though, because I was concerned about safety, sanitariness and the "strangeness" of the idea of someone sticking needles into me.


Finally, I met Elise Rivers of CAMA at a Mt. Airy fund raising event, and her professional yet warm manner convinced me to try it.


That was about four months ago.


Now I'm a regular at CAMA. My disc-related sciatica is much better and I think of acupuncture as one of the lower back maintenance routines that I depend on to manage this chronic condition.


I've seen three different CAMA accupuncturists and would highly recommend all three. This is a very professional group.


The facility is quiet and spotlessly clean. I'm really glad to have found a place that is so committed to their professional practice that they've found a way to offer services at a truly affordable sliding rate...this lets me have acupuncture treatments every week for my back and other issues that come and go. Really a great health maintenance resource...


Linda F. --Chestnut Hill, March 2012

I've been shouting my recommendation of CAMA from the rooftops.


The impact of acupuncture on my life has been profound.


THANK YOU for CAMA - the affordable pricing is what is allowing me to experience it.



V.C.--October 2011

I've been shouting my recommendation of CAMA from the rooftops. The impact of acupuncture on my life has been profound. THANK YOU for CAMA - the affordable pricing is what is allowing me to experience it.
V.C.--October 2011


My name is Betty Hudnell and I have acupuncture sessions on Tuesday evenings with Eloise. I would like to tell you about the success I have had so far. I have only had 2 sessions but I feel so much better.


I have arthritis in several places but my knees are the worst. Walking is difficult and painful. After my second session I was able to walk 3 blocks to the bus stop. The weather was really bad on that day so I had to stand for an hour waiting for a bus that never came. I was able to walk back home with only a minimal amount of pain. I have not been able to walk that far without stopping to rest since June.


The acupuncture has also been very successful relieving the stress in my body caused by the pain from arthritis.


I am really excited about my treatments and look forward to my next one. I would like to thank you and Eloise for being there.

-B.H. February 2011


I decided to get acupuncture treatments at CAMA once a week in the hope that they would alleviate symptoms associated to rheumatoid arthritis.


Two of the worst symptoms that I was suffering were pain in the inflamed joints of my hands and low fever every evening at sunset. I was also always tired and afraid.


From the first treatment, with Elise Rivers, the fevers disappeared completely. Today, two months later, I have regained my strength and, taking no treatment other than acupuncture, I feel a general sense of well being that allows me to feel confident about the future.


I am immensely grateful to the staff of CAMA for the service they provide. The cost is affordable allowing me to have weekly treatments. CAMA is an extraordinary gift to me and to the community.

-A.W. January 2011


Finding CAMA was such a gift! I have been getting acupuncture for 10 years - and have always had a positive experience - CAMA is no exception. The staff is wonderful, the space is gorgeous and healing, and the on-line scheduler to make or change appointments is incredibly convenient.


I also very much appreciated the phone call I received from Elise when I first began with CAMA to see how I was doing and how the acupuncture was going. My acupuncturist at CAMA, Kim, is deft in her craft, healing in her sessions and wonderfully supportive. CAMA is not only a place for healing, but a true community which supports and cares for its clients. I will continue to go to CAMA for my health needs, and highly recommend it to anyone who is either frustrated with their Western care, is tired of chronic pain, or who just needs a good tune up.

-H.R. Nov. 2010


Back pain that I have had for more than forty years has been greatly reduced by the acupuncture treatments I get from Elise.


I'm now able to do many things much more comfortably than I have for years; I especially love being able to go for a walk without feeling tied up in knots.


And to think that I get these great results from going to a quiet, friendly place where I lie on a table to receive needles I scarcely feel, get warmed by a heat lamp, and drift off to sleep listening to music. Community Acupuncture of Mt. Airy, you're the greatest!

-K.B. January 2010


I've had acupuncture in the past, but it does not compare to comfort I feel or the care I receive at Mt. Airy Acupuncture Clinic.


All of my life I have been afraid of needles and I thought going to acupuncture would help me "conquer my fear" and it has, for the most part.


My hand still sweat a little bit when I arrive, but as soon as I lie down on the table an immediate sense of tranquility descends upon me.


In the hubbub of daily life many physical or emotional ailments arise, but Pam always helps me work through it.


Just recently as Spring has sprung and allergy season gets into full force I agreed to get a needle in a scary place: my eyeball! It's not half as bad as you think, your eye is closed and the point is supposed to clear out the sinus in the corner of your eye, so all of the itchy eye irritants get released. Because of this one point I don't go crazy itching my eyes anymore. I love this place and would recommend it to everyone I know.

-CC of Mt Airy


Yes, I believe. I did not at first.


My knee pains from the broken prosthesis (the knee caps plastic or titanium) were no longer in place but wandering around after I fell a few times. I did not want to take medicines for the pain (so often you hear about serious side affects after using them for a while. I had a close call once).


I was not ready for surgery to replace the prosthesis. I thought I'd try acupuncture but how could needles solve my pain that were at the times interfering with how I walked and where and what I was willing to do?

Well, now at 80 years of age, I believe. My knees are no longer a real issue. I've gone on to getting help with other arthritic pains (hands now), to help with my over active bladder, calm my anxiety and feeling of stress, etc.

I've been coming for acupuncture sometimes at first weekly, then bi-weekly, monthly, as needed. YES, I BELIEVE.


Since I expect to live to be at least 100, I have made a personal commitment to myself to make acupuncture part of my regular health care so that I can enjoy a good quality -I work three days a week, do volunteer work as for example teaching cooking to children in an afterschool program and as treasurer of my alumni group at University of Pennsylvania. So you see I have no time to sit in a rocking chair dozing off. I must maintain my active life style.

-E W
January 2010


After constant, lingering pain from two herniated discs which prevented me from doing simple, everyday chores, and after much reading and educating myself, I decided to try acupuncture.


My experience after five sessions leads me to describe this alternative treatment for pain as clean, neat, and uncomplicated with no unpleasant side affects. I don't know what makes it work or maybe it's mind over matter, but it is one of the most positive experiences I could seek to relieve my pain.

-L. J



Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS)-induced distress and desperation led me to acupuncture. I had endured years of IBS symptoms (bloating, constipation, infrequent but serious abdominal pain, and general gastrointestinal distress). Four years ago after an emergency room visit for severe abdominal pain and projectile vomiting, I sought follow up care from a gastroenterologist. After an endoscopy and a barium enema showed no physical problems, I received an IBS diagnosis. My treatment options were few. I could take prescription medication, an option to which I was adamantly opposed; or I could experiment with flaxseed oil. The flaxseed oil helped a bit, but did not rid me of my symptoms. So I tolerated my symptoms and relied on charcoal tablets for my more severe IBS flare ups.

In May 2008, after an especially painful bout of major bloating (my relatively flat abdomen looked like I was five months pregnant), constipation and abdominal discomfort that lasted a week, a friend recommended that I try acupuncture. Specifically, she suggested Elise Rivers at CAMA. When later that same week my massage therapist (to whom I had also complained about my IBS symptoms) also highly recommended that I seek acupuncture treatment from Elise, I considered that an auspicious sign and made an appointment.

Although I was apprehensive about the needles, the prospect of being IBS-symptom free trumped my concerns about a little needle discomfort. During my first session, Elise took a fairly comprehensive medical history. I was surprised to have her ask me about my other troublesome symptoms like mental and physical sluggishness, frequent urination, painful periods. Like my IBS, I had tolerated all of these for so long, that I just accepted them as normal. Elise noted that by Chinese medicine standards, my Qi imbalance was due to too much dampness. She established a course of treatment involving acupuncture and moxabustion. She was optimistic that acupuncture could help and encouraged me to be patient. The initial plan was 10 weekly sessions.

Well, no one is more elated than I about how right Elise was to be optimistic! It's important to note that the results were not immediate. Elise rightly cautioned me to release my Western mind's hope for a quick fix and reminded me that after living with IBS for so long, it was unrealistic to expect my symptoms to disappear overnight. Within a few treatments though, I noticed that my IBS flare ups were not as severe and certainly not as long-lasting as they had been before I began acupuncture. After 12 or so treatments, the results were dramatically positive. I started seeing Elise biweekly for subsequent treatments and we're about to see how I will fare with monthly treatments. Oh the joy! I have had no major bloating or constipation in six months; the moxa (which I use daily) works like a charm to keep my digestive

flowing; my energy level is fantastic with much of that sluggishness gone; and my periods sneak up on me with no major cramping and few of the troublesome PMS-symptoms that I used to endure with regularity prior to acupuncture.

As for those needles… Well, I'm nowhere near as apprehensive about them as I was when I first started acupuncture. Each session is different. Sometimes, I feel a little prick; other times a sting; other times nothing; and then there are those times when the sensation is sharper and not as comfortable. The good news though is that within seconds the discomfort is gone. I welcome a few seconds of minor discomfort (I can't even call it pain, really) because I know that the "magic wands" (Elise's lovely term for the needles) are working their energetic magic to rid me of my IBS-symptoms and leave me feeling balanced and healthy. Acupuncture in general, and Elise at Moon River Acupuncture in particular, are now a regular and integral part of my health regimen. Thus, I enthusiastically and without reservation recommend that fellow IBS-sufferers give acupuncture a try; those magic wands can work wonders!

November 15, 2008


Testimonial of New Parent
January '09

Hi Elise,

I wanted to write to you to tell you what an amazing experience I have had at Community Acupuncture of Mt. Airy in the last few months. As you might remember, I originally started going to Pam because my husband and I had been trying to conceive for almost a year and couldn't get pregnant. We ran into the most difficulty when my period stopped for 6 months. In September, after an extensive evaluation that included an ultrasound, my GYN told me that I had polycystic ovaries and would need to start on fertility drugs if we still wanted to conceive and my period did not return naturally. If it was possible to avoid the drug route, I didn't want to go through what I had seen a number of my friends go through - the crazy hormone fluctuations, the physical disruption that fertility drugs bring to a body, the awful side effects, and the frequent doctor appointments - so my husband and I decided it would be a good idea to try acupuncture and do an herbal consult at CAMA.

Though I am quite afraid of needles, I felt comfortable with Pam immediately. She was very responsive to my needs as a client, honoring my sensitivity to needles and consistently remembering so much about me - what difficulties and symptoms I had been having, how she had chosen to treat me in past weeks, what had worked and what hadn't worked, even how my pulse changed over the course of time. After just a little over a month of acupuncture and herbs, my period returned naturally in the beginning of November. In the beginning of December, I went away on a trip, and before I left Pam told me that it would take 3 or 4 more months to get me "regular" before we could start working on the fertility aspect. I didn't mind because I already felt the benefits of acupuncture. My body felt better and more balanced, and I was, on the whole, more relaxed and thoughtful about this journey towards parenthood. A few weeks into my trip, though, I found out that I was pregnant! It was so exciting to send an email to Pam to give her the good news, and her response reminded me that this clinic truly positions the client and the acupuncturist as partners in healing.

Now I am almost 12 weeks pregnant and continuing to come to the clinic once a week to help the pregnancy go well. I am so happy to have the clinic, since we would not have been able to afford such extensive quality, convenient acupuncture treatment anywhere else.

So I want to thank you for providing this service to the community. I have already recommended it to everyone I know! You're welcome to share my story and recommendation with anyone, but this is mostly about thanking you and the other acupuncturists :)

-S R



Sample Notes of Appreciation Received over the Years

So glad I found you! K.D. January 2005


Since I moved to Philadelphia to become a student three years ago, I had wanted to do what I consider to be 'authentic healthcare', namely, acupuncture -- which I had great experiences with up in Massachusetts. The usual cost of seeing a practitioner, however, made acupuncture prohibitive to me on my student budget. After I graduated last Spring, I noticed the sign for the Community Acupuncture of Mt. Airy in a store front window one day while walking up Germantown Ave. Then in November I caught 'the bad flu'. With all respect to what Western medicine does well, after struggling for two months, I was very debilitated. Balancing and strengthening the system are some of acupuncture's strengths and I knew that to heal completely I would need this level of care. The CAMA clinic offers clients a friendly, healing environment. Its affordability has allowed me to receive weekly treatments-which permit acupuncture to be at its best as a support to healing. I believe that low cost holistic clinics, which I am familiar with from Massachusetts, are the actual cutting edge of healthcare. I always feel that I have made a good investment in my own life when I participate in holistic care. I highly recommend them. Thank you! HT March 2010


Thank you for your kindness, compassion and total professionalism. You left a powerful influence on me with your gentleness. You have restored my faith in my future which was pretty dull. B.D. June 2005


After constant, lingering pain from two herniated discs which prevented me from doing simple, everyday chores, and after much reading and educating myself, I decided to try acupuncture. My experience after five sessions leads me to describe this alternative treatment for pain as clean, neat and uncomplicated with no unpleasant side effects. I don't know what makes it work or maybe it's mind over matter, but it is one of the most positive experiences I could seek to relieve my pain. L.J. October 2005


Thank you so much for your marvelous awareness and your tools! D.L. March 2006


Your concern and compassion around my chronic pain are deeply felt and appreciated.
D.R. August 2006


Thank you so much for your kindness, your caring, your devotion to the healing process, and your love. You are truly wonderful. You make my pain easier to bear. J.H. April 2007


Thank you so much for my visit today. I felt so cared for and taken care of-such a contrast with all the doctor visits I've been going to lately. A.L. May 2007


I want you to know how much I appreciate all you've been doing for me. You are such a gifted healer and a kind and compassionate soul. L.R. September 2007


Thank you for your extraordinary work, your patience and compassion. K.F. September 2007

I am so grateful to have found you. You are a gifted healer. S.Z. December 2007


Coming to the clinic has helped me quite a lot, emotionally, physically and mentally. I honestly can not imagine not having found out about your clinic. So thank you or being so wonderful and giving in so many ways. Your work and kindness is very much appreciated. J.H. March 2008