Acupuncture is one of the oldest, most commonly used systems of healing in the world.  Originating in China some 3,500 years ago, only since the late 1980s has it become popular in the United States. In 1993, the Food and Drug Administration estimated that Americans made up to 12 million visits per year to acupuncture practitioners and spent upwards of half a billion dollars on acupuncture treatments.  The needles used are fine as hair, sterile, and disposed of after one use.