An acupuncture point is a specific location on your body where an acupuncturist inserts a needle. For acupuncturists, the existence of these points is kind of a leap of faith. The points we practitioners use have specific locations, actions, and work in combination with other points. It’s fair to say that we acupuncturists have a relationship with some of the points we use. There are those that we choose all the time and others that we rarely even think about.
In a study conducted in China, researchers using CT scans were able to observe very distinct structural differences between acupuncture points and the surrounding tissues. The points in the study (St 36 and St 37) were different in that they were more vascular, having a greater concentration of micro vessels (tiny blood vessels) as well as a greater number of large blood vessels than tissues that are not acupuncture points. The researchers were also able to estimate the size of an acupuncture point by the diameter of the vascular concentrations that the CT scans revealed.
So while we can’t see, feel, smell, or hear acupuncture points, it seems that they may be real after all. It feels like validation to me.