Dry needling is the insertion of fine needles (acupuncture needles) into trigger and tender points for the purpose of relieving pain and spasm. It is not acupuncture in the Traditional Chinese sense as it uses western theories and evidence to guide its administration. Dry needling is performed at a palpated trigger point or tender point. Current research supports the procedure as deactivating these neurologically active points.
It is used for muscular and soft tissue pain; and is effective in treating tendinopathy type conditions, deep trigger points and, patients intolerant to deep soft tissue therapy, and is also successful in relaxing muscles. Tennis elbow, shoulder tendinitis, chronic neck pain and low back pain are common complaints that have excellent results with dry needling.