TCM in Shanghai: Acupuncture at Body & Soul

Shanghai Living

It’s not a last resort, it’s the cure

We reached out to Doris Rathgeber, TCM doctor and founder of Body & Soul, a clinic with multiple locations in Shanghai that focuses on TCM treatments to find out more about acupuncture.

Integrative of Chinese and Western techniques, acupuncture is recognized by the World Health Organization as an effective form of treatment, proven for 28 diseases including depression, joint pain and infertility. Pressing her on successful cases of infertility, Rathgeber says she’s had countless cases, adding that it makes up 50% of Body & Soul’s clientele. Men and women who come to be treated for infertility start off with a proper diagnosis that includes blood tests, ultrasounds and other checks, before being treated with herbal medicine and acupuncture, which restores hormonal imbalances.

The second most treated ailment at her clinics is emotional, for patients who don’t want to go on anti-anxiety or anti-depression medication.

How does it work?
The needle enters the body and communicates with the nerve. The never will trigger a signal to the brain, which releases endorphines and hormones to heal the affected area, kicking off a healing reaction. The logic behind acupuncture is related to Qi, the life-flow of the body. Acupuncture targets a stagnation of qi, which is like a “traffic jam on the meridiens”.

Receiving Treatment
Patients first enter consultation. Doctor Jessie Yan, who has been with Body & Soul for more than 10 years, starts us off by asking us to stick out our tongue, also known as a tongue diagnostic. The tongue offers a blueprint of our body’s ailments, displaying telltale signs of discoloration and reddish spots, which is used to interpret irregularities in internal organs. Having bad knees, we also asked Yan to direct her attention there.

With our one-time treatment, we did notice an improvement with joint pains and increased strength, despite being slightly sore. The regained strength diminished over the days, but it succeeded in converting any doubt we had about acupuncture. For it to be effective, Rathgeber recommends treatment twice a week for at least one month. The rough estimate of healing and treatment time is equivalent to the duration of the ailment, so it’s best to catch it early on.

How much will acupuncture cost me?
For those considering visiting Body & Soul, the first consultation is RMB1,150, acupuncture treatment is RMB790 and a follow up consultation RMB950.

While it may be bold to say acupuncture is the cure, it’s certainly inching out of alternative medicine and becoming the first choice for some patients.


Body & Soul Xintiandi
Address: 14/F, 760 Xizang Nan Lu (near Jianguo Xin Lu) 西藏南路760号14楼 (近建国新路)
Tel: 5101-9262

Body & Soul Jing’an
Address: 6/F, Four Seasons Jing’an, 500 Weihai Lu (near Shimen Yi Lu) 威海路500弄,静安四季酒店6楼 (近石门一路)
Tel: 150-0059-7770

Body & Soul Pudong
Address: Rm. 1303, Bldg B, Jin Ying Building, 80 Hanxiao Lu (near Minsheng Lu) 含笑路80号B号楼1303室 (近民生路)
Tel: 6162-0361

Body & Soul Hongmei Lu
Address: 211 Chengjiaqiao Zhi Lu (near Hongmei Lu) 程家桥路211号 (近虹梅路)
Tel: 6461-6550

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