Carolyn Shannon Sullivan LIC. AC, Acupuncturist
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Carolyn Shannon Sullivan LIC. AC


24 S Main St. Randolph MA, 02368


Carolyn Sullivan is an acupuncturist practicing in Randolph, Ma.  She evaluates and treats patients based on the concepts of oriental medicine. Acupuncturists complete their evaluations by getting a patient history and examining abnormalities in skin discoloration, sensitivity, scar tissues and the like.. Then, they place very fine acupuncture needles into specific points on the body based on a patients' diagnosis. Stimulation of the needles is how the energy system, or qi, is activated.  Acupuncture is a great way to treat physical pain as well as emotional stress in a gentle, non-invasive manner.  Call today to see if acupuncture is right for you!

Education and Training

New England School of Acupunct Masters of Acupuncture 2009

Provider Details

Female English
Carolyn Shannon Sullivan LIC. AC
Carolyn Shannon Sullivan LIC. AC's Expert Contributions
  • Can acupuncture help with concussions?

    I do not know what other practitioners would say, but I personally, would not feel comfortable treating for a concussion without first having you cleared from a Western medical doctor. If you are still having pain or getting migraines, acupuncture can help with residual pain. But first, proper tests would have to had been conducted and anything serious ruled out. READ MORE

  • How long after acupuncture do you feel better?

    It really varies from person to person. It can depend on what is causing the headaches amongst other variables. What is your diet like? Are you eating in regular intervals, including plenty of protein, fiber, etc. daily? What about your water and caffeine intake? Have you been checked for food allergies? Are you on any medications that may cause headaches as a side effect? Could it be a hormone imbalance? If you are female, it is quite common for headaches to surface around the time before and during the period. I would suggest getting blood work to see if you have any vitamin deficiencies or hormone imbalances. I am assuming that you have already seen your PCP for the headaches? He or she may want to do more tests such as an MRI. If you have checked for the previously mentioned things and still have headaches, acupuncture can be helpful so long as there is not something systemically wrong. Try changing up your diet, eliminating dairy, chocolate, caffeine, sugar, wheat and so on, one by one for two weeks at a time to see if that doesn't stop the headaches. Drink more water than usual and halt any alcoholic beverages. It may be one thing, it may be a combination of things that are causing your pain. Acupuncture efficacy with headaches depends upon your general health, dietary choices, exercise and fresh air. It could also be possible exposure to toxins in your home or workplace. Body mechanics while sitting, walking, sleeping may play a part, as well. Try doing deep stretching several times daily, focusing on the neck and shoulders. Oftentimes, headaches are a result of neck tension that is not addressed. I know when I sit at the computer too long, my neck and shoulders get stiff and even painful if I don't stop every once in a awhile to stretch and get a drink of water. I also get headaches and I use a cervical pillow to support my neck properly while sleeping. I absolutely cannot do without my pillow, it has helped the level of pain quite a bit. Hopefully, after you implement all of these suggestions, you will see a decrease in your headaches. How many treatments are necessary before seeing a change will depend upon how well you are taking care of yourself. Good luck!! READ MORE

  • Is acupuncture good for dizziness?

    First of all, I would never say that acupuncture can "fix" anything. It has been shown in the past to be helpful in eliminating dizziness, but there is no telling if it will return. Secondly, you must first identify the potential cause of the dizziness. For instance, if medicines are attributing to dizziness and you are still taking them, then acupuncture probably won't help until you stop. Some medications cause long lasting side effects even long after stopping them. Have you had bloodwork taken? There may be a vitamin or other deficiency that may be causing the problem. And lastly, if none of the aforementioned conditions apply to you, then yes, acupuncture can be helpful but it most likely will take at least 6 treatments before you see results. Now, this is not the same for every patient in every case, but to give you a realistic timeframe, 6-8 treatments is recommended before you can make an honest assessment whether acupuncture is right for you. In the meantime, get a cervical pillow to sleep on nightly for one week and see if that doesn't help. Do neck stretches at least three times per day. Drink a minimum of 64 oz. of water daily. Exercise daily and stretch both before and after. Get extra sleep if you can, and get at least 8 hours of RESTFUL, DEEP sleep. See an ENT specialist to see if maybe there isn't a buildup of ear was that could be contributing to dizziness. Always make sure that you PCP knows about your condition so they can research possible causes and follow you closely. Good luck!!! READ MORE

  • How often should you have acupuncture treatment for headaches?

    It really depends upon how severe or debilitating your headaches are. Are you on any medication or NSAID's for them? Are you seeking care from a specialist? They may be able to weigh in on this. With acupuncture, it is important to look at all the body systems to make a diagnosis, a Chinese Medical diagnosis. We take into account the whole person and not just the condition. It is very hard to say how often you should get acupuncture or for how long/how many treatments. What you are eating (or not eating) may be causing the headaches. Not being hydrated enough, possible food allergies, not enough sleep or poor sleep quality, possible toxins in your home or work environment may be a factor in why you are getting headaches. I think it's wise to check in with your doctor and get blood drawn to see if there isn't something going on systemically that can possibly shed light on what is causing the headaches. In the meantime, drink plenty of water, get at least 8 hours nightly, stretch daily and especially before bed. Tight neck and shoulders can often cause or lead to headaches. Get a cervical pillow to use while sleeping and see if that doesn't help. Good luck and feel better. READ MORE

  • Can acupuncture help bloating?

    it depends upon the root of the problem. Have you seen your PCP or gotten any labs? If there is something wrong systemically, you may need to address that first. But if things of that nature have been ruled out, yes, acupuncture can be helpful. From a Chinese Medical perspective, bloating can be caused by poor diet, food allergies, gluten, in specific is a big problem these days. I would suggest first trying eliminating different classes of foods (ie., all dairy) for a two-week period to see if that does the trick. Eliminating only one type at a time will help to isolate which is the offending food. Bloating can be caused by certain medications. If you are taking any medications, look at all side effects. Check with your doctor or pharmacist to see if any meds are contraindicated - as this may be your body's way of telling you certain meds do not agree with the others. I would also suggest that you are drinking at LEAST 8 8 oz glasses of water daily. You may start peeing a lot more but that may be an outlet for the bloat. If you have already tried all of these things/suggestions, then see your local practitioner for a treatment today. Good luck! READ MORE

  • Can acupuncture help respiratory problems?

    Acupuncture can aid in restoring lung function but if there is something systemically wrong, more invasive action must be taken. Respiratory issues such as asthma can be difficult to treat, and in most cases, medications are necessary. Acupuncture works to assist the body in restoring normal body processes (in this, case Lung Qi) but oftentimes, inhalers or other types of aids are needed regardless. So the short answer is...yes, it can help but it will not substitute for western (traditional) medicine. READ MORE

  • How long does it take to fix a bulging disc?

    In no way can I answer that question. There may be no "fix" to be had even with conventional methods, but more in the way of pain management. Surgery is often warranted to relieve pressure on the nerves or spinal column. It can go away on its own over time. You may want to see a chiropractor, neurologist or a naturopathic doctor, as they have much more expertise on the subject. Acupuncture can help alleviate pain associated with a bulging disc and reduce swelling around the vertebrae but your best bet is to talk to your PCP about a referral to a specialist. In the meantime, immobilization and the application of ice usually are helpful in quieting the intense pain associated with a slipped disc. Good luck! READ MORE

  • Does acupuncture help with tinnitus?

    It can, but it may take multiple treatments to see results. Have you seen an audiologist or an ENT doc? You may have excessive ear wax buildup that can be causing a problem. If there is something structurally wrong, that will have to be addressed first. You may have an issue that can be best rectified with more invasive treatment, but you should see a specialist to rule anything out. So yes, acupuncture can help if it has been determined first that there is not something systemically wrong. In the meantime, avoid loud music or places where there is construction or vibrations. Don't put anything in your ears like earbuds or plugs. Be very careful with using Q-tips or don't use any at all. Good luck! READ MORE

  • I have night tremors?

    I have no idea. You really need to see a specialist. This is out of my purview. Good luck. READ MORE

  • Should I stop taking blood thinners?

    I would never advise to get on or get off of any medication. I am not a licensed physician. Please check with your doctor regarding this. But just so you know, acupuncture needles are very thin and can be inserted very shallowly. Most patients have no bleeding upon removal at all. But if you are concerned, you can get acupressure, magnets, cupping, gua sha, among other types of treatment that do not require puncturing the skin. But always consult your doctor before adjusting or stopping any medication. Good luck. READ MORE

  • Can you get acupuncture during pregnancy?

    Yes, you can. Acupuncture is safe for low- or no-risk pregnancies; for high-risk, consult your OBGYN first. There are acupoints and areas of the body to be avoided during the first trimester. So long as you seek treatment from a LICENSED acupuncturist and not an MD that practices dry needling, you will get proper care. A practitioner who is licensed by the state, has had a minimum of 3 years education in a Master's level accredited school, will know how best to care for you after conducting a thorough health history. Good luck!!! READ MORE

  • How many sessions of acupuncture do you need for knee pain?

    There is no set amount of visits really depends upon how severe the damage is, for one. Secondly, have you had an MRI or X-ray of the knee to find out if there arthritis, an ACL tear, etc? Thirdly, what do you do for work? Could what you are doing, sitting or standing all day, on a cement floor, not wearing proper footwear be an issue? And lastly, if you are overweight, that can cause a tremendous strain on the knees and all of the joints, really. Are you exercising at all? Too much or too hard? Are you wearing sturdy shoes for the activity? Patients have complained of knee pain from doing too many squats, for instance. You may want to look at your exercise routine and body mechanics at work and seek advice from a personal trainer to determine if you are doing something that is harmful to your joints/knees. So, therefore, how well you respond to acupuncture will depend upon all of these factors. Good luck!!! READ MORE

  • Is acupuncture good for IBS?

    Acupuncture can help regulate the digestive system, yes, but it depends upon what is causing the problem. If there is a dietary issue, such as gluten intolerance, you need to remove the offending food before acupuncture can do anything. It will not cure gluten intolerance. You should talk to your doctor about what may be causing the issue. You may need to see a gastroenterologist. My suggestion would be to start removing different types of food, one by one, to help you isolate what category of food may be the problem. Start by giving up all types of dairy for a few weeks at least. Dairy has been known to be upsetting to some people who cannot process lactose. Another potential culprit can be acidic foods, such as chocolate, coffee, etc. Acupuncture can help with stomach upset, but it won't substitute for abstinence if it is warranted. Stress could also be an issue. But first, talk to your doctor to make sure something more serious isn't going on. Good luck. READ MORE

  • Do I need to rest after acupuncture?

    Yes, it is advised, especially if you are coming in for an acute condition. Some people feel tired after acupuncture and this is normal. I have also had patients tell me that they feel energized after treatment. Alleviation of pain can boost energy, but it is important to let your body to adjust to the treatment and pay attention to what is going within the body. Both of these scenarios help with diagnoses and treatment strategies going forward. READ MORE

  • Can acupuncture help the flu?

    Well, it may not be able to stop the flu if you already have a weakened immune system, but it can help to strengthen your immune system. Exposure to people who are sick definitely affect your chances of getting sick, but the best thing that you can do is get plenty of rest, eat healthfully, stay hydrated and wash those hands!! READ MORE

  • Can acupuncture hit a nerve?

    Acupuncturists are trained in proper technique and depth of needling. The one exception to that rule might be needling PC6, which is used for nausea among other things. It is situated on the inner wrist and sometimes the median nerve can be hit because of the close proximity to the point and the tight musculature/tendinous area. Yet, I have needled that point many times without a problem. So the short answer is, yes, it is possible to hit a nerve. Every practitioner has completed a minimum of 700 hours of clinic even before they start practicing on their own. We have been trained on anatomy and how to locate points effectively without causing harm. Think positive! Acupuncture can be very helpful for a multitude of ailments. It will help you if you give it at least 6 -8 treatments and trust that your practitioner knows what he or she is doing. READ MORE

  • Which is better acupuncture or acupressure?

    Both are good, but using needles on the acupoints definitely goes deeper to achieve maximum benefit. Acupressure is great when you have someone who is afraid of needles. I have had patients that did not want needles, only acupressure. They were happy with the results but when I asked them to try needles, they did and were surprised how practically painless it was. READ MORE

  • Can acupuncture release trapped emotions?

    I have had patients become very emotional on the table. It's not always the case though, even if you are seeking treatment for depression/anxiety/mental health issues. How patients respond to acupuncture varies greatly among individuals. It also can depend on how frequently you get treatment. Those patients that come regularly, usually weekly and for at least 6-8 sessions will see the best results. As with any type of medicine, there is no guarantee but the more you can do for yourself, such as getting counseling, proper rest, etc, the better results all around with acupuncture. Good luck!!! READ MORE

  • How quickly does acupuncture work for back pain?

    It depends upon many factors; how severe your condition is, how long after injury you are seeking treatment with acupuncture, and so on. If you are overweight or sedentary, it may take longer or you may not respond at all. It truly is on a case-by-case basis. Have you had any surgeries-back related or not? Scar tissue can form and complicate how well or quickly you respond to acupuncture. How is your posture? Do you exercise regularly? What is your diet and water intake like? Do you wear supportive shoes or walk barefoot often? As you can see, there are multiple factors involved how well you will respond to treatment. Ask your local practitioner about your particular case. Good luck!! READ MORE

  • Can acupuncture cure cataracts?

    Acupuncture is not necessarily a "cure" for anything. There has been improvement in vision over time with acupuncture, but a cure, I am very reluctant to say. Chinese medicine works by fixing imbalances, strengthening the immune system, improving sleep and so on. And by doing so, there is healthy nerve regeneration, hormone level balancing and other body processes that aid in vision repair. If someone is predisposed to cataracts, or has a family history, there may be little acupuncture can do to prevent it. Oftentimes, surgery is warranted, and only your doctor can say for certain how advanced your cataracts are and if they will respond to acupuncture treatment or not. READ MORE

Areas of expertise and specialization

Musculoskeletal, nerve and joint pain


  • Certificate in Auriculotherapy 2006 Terry Olsen 

Carolyn Shannon Sullivan LIC. AC's Practice location

Patz Chiropractic

24 S Main St. -
Randolph, MA 02368
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New patients: 617-458-0530

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