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Dr. Aena Payne Adds Acupuncture and Pediatric Specialties to Oxford Area

Dr. Aena Payne, M.D.
Dr. Aena Payne, M.D.

When Dr. Aena Payne, M.D., talks about acupuncture, she’s quick to emphasize the positive changes it creates when combined with moderate exercise and healthier diets.
In mid-May, she will open a once-a-week acupuncture clinic at the Tri-Lakes Medical Center, in Batesville.
Payne is certified as both a pediatrician and as an acupuncturist. Right now, she works primarily as a pediatrician at the Tri-Lakes Pediatric Clinic.
In addition to her pediatric and acupuncture practices in Batesville, she still travels once a month to visit long-time acupuncture patients in Jackson.
Originally from South Korea, Payne has spent most of the past 40 years in the United States, attending medical school at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical School, in Dallas, Texas.
She has completed acupuncture training at UCLA, Harvard and the University of Southern California, with knowledge in several acupuncture styles: Yamamoto New Scalp, Chinese Scalp, Constitutional and Mei Zen, Japanese Kiiko Matsumoto and Medical Acupuncture. Each course lasts about one year.
For the past 20 years, she has worked in pediatrics in Texas, Arizona and Mississippi. She has spent the past decade working at the University of Mississippi Pain Clinic, in the anesthesiology department as a director of the Medical Acupuncture clinic, in Jackson.
She is also a clinical professor at the William Carey Osteopathic medical school in Hattiesburg.
She’s also working with StaHome Hospice as a pediatric medical director, and plans to develop a pediatric hospice referral base in northern Mississippi, from St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital.
Acupuncture has remarkable benefits for patients of all ages, including her pediatric patients.
One of her tiniest acupuncture patients was a 3-week-old baby who couldn’t move his arm. During a vacuum delivery, his nerve was pinched, also known as brachial plexis palsy. After two acupuncture treatments, he was sucking his thumb with that arm.
While Dr. Aena Payne provides acupuncture services to children too, most of her long-term clients are adults interested in relieving pain from past surgeries or injuries.
While Dr. Aena Payne provides acupuncture services to children too, most of her long-term clients are adults interested in relieving pain from past surgeries or injuries.

While Payne provides acupuncture services to children too, most of her long-term clients are adults interested in relieving pain from past surgeries or injuries.
That pain can come from stress, fibromyalgia, a migraine or failed back surgery, among other reasons.
“Before surgery or after, acupuncture can give patients faster healing and recovery,” Payne said.
Stroke patients who visit an acupuncturist immediately see more improvement, as is the normal practice in China, while someone who waits a few years won’t see as much improvement.
For some other patients, acupuncture can provide life-changing relief much sooner.
“I’ve had a patient for seven or eight years, who had severe migraines at 36, who was on medications and depressed,” Payne said. “She wasn’t herself and now she’s doing very well. She comes in for maintenance treatments, three or four times a year.”
Acupuncture isn’t an instant cure-all for most patients. For most patients, treatment starts as once or twice weekly, depending on a patient’s diagnosis, then later maintenance visits to once a month or just once every few months.
Each visit lasts about an hour.
Acupuncture is just one part of alternative medicine that can promote greater health and vitality without so many pills.
Payne is working to obtain Perfect Health certification from the Chopra Center in California to add Ayurvedic health regimens for her patients’ health management.
The main goals are teaching patients how to control illness, maintain better health and age gracefully.
Ayervedic medicine incorporates teaching yoga, massage and meditation to improve the spiritual lifestyle, for alleviating anxiety and depression.
When parents include acupuncture and alternative medicine in their young children’s health regimen, it helps to prevent disease early in their lives.
“In Oxford, more people are starting to do yoga and meditation, although it’s not as open,” she said. “I hope that alternative medicine can be promoted here.”
One of the major stumbling blocks for introducing people to acupuncture is that many insurance policies don’t cover it. Some federal Blue Cross Blue Shield policies, such as those held by postal workers, can be used for acupuncture, she said.
That shouldn’t stop patients from trying it, she said, because major benefits are many times seen after just a few visits.
Payne is accepting new acupuncture and pediatric patients. She can be contacted via telephone at (662) 563-7873, at the Tri-Lakes Medical Center. The medical center is a 112-bed hospital in Batesville that opened in 2001 and now has a team of more than 350 associates.
Gretchen Stone is HottyToddy.com associate editor. Gretchen can be contacted about this story at Gretchen.Stone@HottyToddy.com

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