We help you solve your painful and irregular cycles, so you can get back to your life!
I’m Katrina Hanson LAc. I’m an Acupuncturist, Herbalist, and Gynecology Professor in Oakland, CA… and I have endometriosis.
You’ve been struggling with painful heavy periods, long and irregular periods, painful ovulation, PMS, and/or spotting between cycles. We get it. We’re here to help people just like you.
Figuring out endometriosis and other menstrual conditions is practically impossible by yourself. You need a guide. We’re here for you.
The problem is you’ve been jumping from practitioner to practitioner, diet to exercise to supplement, not knowing what’s going to work for you. We’ll help you figure out a solid plan and stick to it, so that you can actually get results.
I spent years suffering from menstrual and month-long pelvic pain, irregular cycles and spotting, heavy periods, PMS, fatigue, anxiety, bloating, and sensitive digestion.
I went to so many doctors: GI doctors for my digestive issues, gynecologists for my menstrual symptoms, primary care to rule out any serious issues. None of them saw my symptoms in a holistic way, they each tried to treat just a handful of them individually.
Even worse, I had to endure homophobia and (sometimes somewhat hostile) questions about my sexuality and relationship status from these healthcare providers. When they weren’t hostile, they wanted me to educate them about identity and pronouns. I couldn’t just be a regular patient.
I began avoiding gynecologists especially, and doctors in general, and was not taking care of my health. I started deciding I could just live with the pain and the other symptoms. I just didn’t want to deal with the discrimination, misunderstandings, and constantly proving that something was wrong even though they couldn’t tell me what it was.
Luckily for me, I was also in acupuncture school at this time. I started studying acupuncture and Chinese Medicine to be able to offer other LGBTQ folks a holistic alternative to the dehumanizing healthcare experiences I’d been subjected to.
I began getting weekly acupuncture sessions, taking herbs regularly, focusing on eating better, and exercising more regularly. All of these things, which in the past would have felt like a waste of my time or money or like denying myself what I wanted, began to feel joyful.
I was finally taking care of myself. I decided I was worth it. I am worth it. Each change I make in my lifestyle, each treatment I get, is a reflection of this. It no longer feels like a choice between ‘all the fun things’ and being healthy. Living healthfully has become fun to me.
I knew what I was doing WORKED. And when I shared it with others it worked for them too. My patients see significant results through regular acupuncture, herbs, and lifestyle changes.
What’s really amazing, is that it’s not just their physical health that improves. Imagine:
- getting up and active in the morning without needing a cup of coffee.
- having enjoyable, pain-free sex again and connecting better in your relationships.
- wearing whatever you want, without having to worry about being embarrassed or uncomfortable due to bloating and excessive bleeding.
- no longer missing work due to pelvic pain and cramps.
Remember, your health and happiness ARE important, and there is no better time to take care of yourself than right now!
What are you signing up for?
Acupuncture works in a series of treatments. We start with more frequent treatments–usually biweekly–to allow the healing momentum to build up. When we stretch out the time between treatments slowly, this allows the body to adjust to the changes being made and to actually maintain the healing process.
If you just have one symptom (painful periods), you may see results in as little as four sessions. For more complex problems, I generally see a HUGE positive shift in symptoms around the 10th session, with encouraging improvement within the first few sessions.
During our consultation call, we’ll discuss your concerns and develop a treatment plan timeline that will work for you, and get you back to the life you deserve.
“As a trans person of color getting to a place of comfort in any type of medical and/or wellness space is often impossible, but not here. Katrina’s created a space where I can feel comfortable, not in spite of my physical discomfort or in spite of my position as a queer of inscrutable ethnicity and gender with variable gender expression, but intentionally for those things”. P.S.
Acupuncture and herbs may help to:
- Restart the menses in amenorrhea
- Slow a heavy flow
- Ease cramps and pelvic pain
- Reduce pain with ovulation
- Reduce PMS/PMDD and bloating
- Prevent spotting between cycles
- Inspire a more regular cycle
I happily work with MDs, Gynecologists, Pelvic Physical Therapists, and other types of providers to provide you with the most well-rounded care possible. Whatever your concerns and goals may be, my mission is to provide you with all available options and the power to make your own informed decisions.
I started studying acupuncture and Chinese Medicine to be able to offer other LGBTQ folks a holistic alternative to the dehumanizing healthcare experiences I’d been subjected to. My personal connection to queer and lesbian communities has, and continues to be the driving focus of my private practice.
I love guiding patients through times of upheaval, allowing them to stay grounded despite the emotional turmoil that often accompanies times of illness.
At Prism, you will not just receive healthcare, you will become part of a journey to regain ownership of your healing process, reconnect with your body, and make positive changes in your life.
We address not only your symptoms but also their underlying cause -and improve your general well-being- in a welcoming and comforting environment. We want everyone to be able to access the healthcare that they want and need without fearing judgement or misunderstanding.
We actually love working with people who are skeptical of healthcare and not used to taking care of their physical and emotional selves. Our practice is about healthcare for individuals, but it’s also about healing the systems that tell women their well-being is less valued and tell trans people their identities are a pathology. We are here for you.
There is no magic pill, no cookie cutter plan, no one-size-fits-all recipe for health. Each of us has different goals for wellness, our bodies have unique needs, and care should look different for each of us too.
Wherever you are, you’re in the right place. Whatever you’re dealing with, we can work with that.
I’ve historically had a lot of mistrust for healthcare professionals and I understand the complicated need for someone who has the knowledge to guide you, without taking charge of YOUR health. You know your body best, but we all need a little guidance!
My goal is always to empower you with information and resources, use acupuncture to help your body heal itself, and guide you in making your own healthcare decisions.
Prism Integrative Acupuncture Mission
To provide a cutting-edge integration of modern Western and classical Chinese diagnosis, via intuitive acupuncture and herbal treatments tailored to YOU, to help you achieve your personal wellness goals and improve your quality of life.
To create a safe, inclusive healing environment where you can access the healthcare you need and deserve, free of discrimination and judgement.
To make you an active participant in the healing process by forming a one-of-a-kind holistic care plan that supports your unique journey towards self-realization, empowerment, and wellness.
“Katrina has been at the forefront of acupuncture and integrative medicine for the queer and trans community for as long as I’ve know her… She was always the “go-to” person for information in how to best support the LGBTQ+ community with acupuncture and herbs. Her education and skill in creating hormone balance and promoting optimal reproductive health goes beyond that of your average acupuncturist – she is truly among the best.” -M.J.
“Katrina at Prism Integrative Acupuncture has a wealth of knowledge that she shares generously. As a transmasculine person early on in HRT, with many questions and concerns, Katrina has been an invaluable, grounding resource. She has always made me feel comfortable and l recommend her to anyone, queer, trans, cis, who are looking for a nonjudgmental, open and knowledgeable acupuncturist”. -H.L.
“I loved working with Katrina… and found her to be extremely knowledgable… I loved how Katrina was always open to answering my (many) questions, and I never felt judged. I felt like we were a team, getting my health back on track”. -R.H.
Normally I charge $150 for initial appointments and $100 for follow-ups, but I’d like to offer you two things:
1. Sign up for a FREE 15 minute consultation to see if Prism is the right fit for you.
2. If you let me know that you found me through this post, you’ll get your first visit for only $120 ($30 off!).
Tell me all about what you’ve been struggling with and take advantage of this limited discount to get the results you deserve, and take back your life!
“As a transgendered man, […Katrina] impressed me with […her] competence in providing healthcare to a trans patient. The intake forms I was asked to fill included a box to indicate my transgendered status. This was only the second time I’d encountered this in a medical setting, and it made me feel especially welcome and understood as a patient. I have often dealt with discomfort and anxiety from healthcare workers around my body and gender, and it was a pleasure to find that this was not the case” -M.S.
Endometriosis is a disease that affects 1 in 10 people who menstruate. On average, it takes 7-10 years for a person to receive an accurate diagnosis of endometriosis, and even after diagnosis, treatment options are limited and come with a lot of side effects (5). Acupuncture and herbs provide support to these western treatments to reduce side effects and improve success, as well as an alternative to more invasive western treatments in some cases.
Newer studies are supporting that endometriosis is nearly always tied to significant immune system dysfunction and chronic inflammation (1, 2, 3). Short term inflammation is essential for keeping us healthy and safe from infection. With endometriosis however, the immune system isn’t actually able to clear the lesions, but it continues trying, leading to chronic inflammation (5).
A recent study shows that there is a strong correlation with endometriosis and “leaky gut syndrome”. Leaky gut contributes even more to chronic inflammation, and to the digestive symptoms of endometriosis. Endometriosis is also an estrogen dominant disease (4), and estrogen dominance further contributes to chronic inflammation.
Luckily, we can work on all of these issues with acupuncture, herbs, supplements, diet, and lifestyle changes.
- Capobianco A, Rovere-Querini P. (2013) Endometriosis, a disease of the macrophage.
- Harada T, Iwabe T, Terakawa N. (2001) Role of cytokines in endometriosis.
- Thiruchelvam U, Wingfield M, O’Farrelly C (2015) Natural Killer Cells, Key Players in Endometriosis
- SE Bulun, KM Zeitoun, K Takayama and H Sasano (2000), Estrogen biosynthesis in endometriosis: molecular basis and clinical relevance
- Jones, Merritt. Natural Harmony Reproductive Health, San Diego. https://naturalharmonyhealth.com/endometriosis/
“Katrina has a very open and friendly demeanor that I absolutely appreciate. It can be difficult to talk about my physical, emotional and mental stresses that can factor into treatment – it’s easy with Katrina. She is also very willing to work with my financial needs! I can really tell she cares”. J.G.
The great thing about Chinese Medicine is that we always work from a constitutional root. We look at the person’s tongue and feel their pulse to identify the root of a person’s pattern and work on that as well as the symptoms. It feels like magic being able to instantly identify the systems that are out of balance and why! The goal is always to bring the patient into alignment with their constitution, reducing their symptoms by returning them to what is natural for their bodies.
Acupuncture is an ancient holistic system that brings patients back into balance by fixing the root of a problem rather than just the symptoms. Some acupoints trigger a release of calming hormones, some rewrite pain pathways, some awaken the immune system, have anti-inflammatory effects, or increase circulation. Together, they help the nervous systems switch from ‘fight or flight’ (stress) mode into ‘rest and digest’ (healing) mode. This helps us keep calm, sleep well, build our immune systems, repair cellular damage; and it does wonders for the overall mind-body connection.
Acupuncture works in a series of treatments. The more scientifically identifiable effects of an acupuncture treatment (including changes in nerve and pain pathways, as well as endorphins and other brain chemicals that are released) last about four days after a session. We start with more frequent treatments to allow this healing momentum to build up. You can never have acupuncture treatments too close together, but you can have them too far apart. When the effects of treatment start to last longer than four days, that tells us that something has actually shifted and begun healing at deeper levels in the body. When we stretch out the time between treatments slowly, this allows the body to adjust to the changes being made and to actually maintain the healing process.
Perhaps the best part of acupuncture is that is just leaves everyone feeling relaxed and reconnected to their bodies and their minds. It allows you space to let go of blocks, introspect, and get guidance on how to best care for yourself. There is nothing on the needles, acupuncture just resets your system so that it can continue caring for itself. Sometimes we just need a little boost to be able to do what our bodies do best: heal and thrive!
In terms of transgender medicine, generally I’m using herbs, acupuncture, and nutrition to support western medicine for their gender transition. Herbs are great at reducing side effects of prescriptions hormones, like hot flashes, acne, hair loss, vaginal dryness, blood pressure imbalance, edema and bloating, and many other effects. Acupuncture is great for reducing chest tightness and back pain from breast binding, as well as for reducing pain and swelling and speeding healing after surgeries, post-surgical numbness, and neuropathies. Acupuncture can also be used to reduce the appearance of scars, including keloid scars, improve circulation to reduce the chance of blood clots and edema, and regulate blood pressure. By increasing or decreasing estrogenic foods in the diet, as well as by eating a balanced diet aimed at encouraging detox and flushing out of excess hormones, nutrition can be an important part of a patient’s transition plan too.
Rigorous scientific studies in recent decades have confirmed the effectiveness of acupuncture on specific conditions. A 2012 meta-review of 29 studies involving 17,922 patients concluded that acupuncture is effective for treating chronic pain[i]. A 2016 study of 209 peri- and post-menopausal women found that acupuncture decreased vasomotor symptoms of menopause by 39.6% compared to an increase of 6% in the control group[ii]. A February 2018 study of 102 patients undergoing laparoscopic hysterectomy at Mount Sinai Hospital in NY saw a 26% reduction in opioid usage post-surgery compared to the control group[iii]. These are just a few of many studies showing the efficacy of acupuncture.
[i] Vickers AJ, Cronin AM, Maschino AC, Lewith G, MacPherson H, Foster NE, Sherman KJ, Witt CM, Linde K, Acupuncture Trialists’ Collaboration FT. (2012). Acupuncture for Chronic Pain Individual Patient Data Meta-analysis. Arch Intern Med, 172(19): 1444–1453. doi:10.1001/archinternmed.2012.3654
[ii] Avis, N. E., Coeytaux, R. R., Isom, S., Prevette, K., & Morgan, T. (2016). Acupuncture in Menopause (AIM) Study: A Pragmatic, Randomized Controlled Trial. Menopause, 23(6): 626–637. doi:10.1097/GME.0000000000000597
[iii] Yoselevsky E. et. al. (2018). A prospective randomized, controlled, blinded trial of pre-operative acupuncture in the management of pain in gynecologic surgery. American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, 218(2): S890. doi:10.1016/j.ajog.2017.12.199
“Katrina is truly a gem. In addition to being thorough and deeply knowledgeable, Katrina is a thoughtful care provider who listens and interacts with patients in a good-humored, clear, and respectful manner… I always leave appointments feeling better. She’s a wonderful provider, and approaches her work and her patients with an open, accepting, and supportive manner that only enhances her technical skills.” -S.L.
“I have been to several acupuncturists over the years but it was not until I started seeing Katrina that I really felt it working for me. She is incredibly knowledgeable and intuitive, easy to talk to, and clearly cares about the well-being of the people she treats.” -N.K.
“I can be completely open with her when I am getting a treatment. She understands what I’m trying to tell her when I discuss my symptoms because she is passionate and informed about trans health.She has great bed side manner, great skills and calming energy. Also she has really helped create a safe space and I appreciate that more than anything.” -C.H.
“My million trivial but life-interfering-with medical problems, especially migraines, taken seriously and resulted in actual diagnosis and actual treatment plan… non-scary, trans-friendly, skilled and interested in helping.” -L.B.
“Katrina’s treatment style is lovely. She had a non-judgmental way of asking detailed health related questions and receiving the answers. I felt like I was comfortable being honest with her. The actual needle part of the acupuncture treatment was not painful and the cupping felt great!” -S.B.
We strive to create a patient-centered, body-positive healing culture for people of all identities and backgrounds. Our commitment includes but is not limited to inclusion of people of any sexual orientation, gender identity or presentation, belief system or religion, body size, relationship status, kink identity, sex worker status, racial identity, ethnicity, nationality, mental or physical ability, citizenship status, or socioeconomic status.
Does acupuncture hurt?
You may feel a tapping or slight pricking sensation on needle insertion, but most people feel nothing at all. If you have any pain or discomfort, speak up so that I can make your treatment as relaxing and comfortable as possible.
What if I don’t want a particular treatment or a particular area of my body needled?
If you have specific concerns about the treatment or if you are not comfortable with certain areas of your body being touched or needled, please let me know. If you need to remain seated rather than lying down, are more comfortable on your side, would prefer to have your hands free during treatment, or have other concerns, please let me know during the intake and I will make sure your needs are accommodated.
How long does the appointment last?
Appointments last about 50 minutes; the first appointment is a little longer. You should arrive 10-15 minutes early to your first appointment to fill out intake forms if you have not already filled them out electronically (you will receive the electronic forms in your confirmation email).
What should I wear to my appointment?
Loose fitting comfortable clothes that provide access up to your elbows and knees. You are welcome to bring a change of clothes or use the gowns we provide.
Is there parking at your clinic?
There is plenty of free parking on the surrounding streets and metered parking directly in front of the entrance. Watch our for street sweeping on Tuesdays and park accordingly.
Is your clinic accessible?
Tables can be raised or lowered for your convenience. There is an accessble entrance and treatment rooms, however the restroom is small and has two steps up to the door.
The clinic is fragrance-sensitive, but uses moxibustion (burning mugwort) and essential oils, which are optional during your treatment. Please be respectful to others who may be sensitive to fragrances, including pregnant people, people with migraines, asthma, allergies, COPD, or MCS, by not wearing perfumes, colognes, or scented products for your treatment.
All advice on this site and blog is for educational uses only. Always consult your doctor before taking any herbs or supplements, or schedule an acupuncture appointment with Katrina to get your own personalized herbal formula and acupuncture treatment. Questions? Check out the FAQ or resources pages or contact.