(225 ILCS 90/1.5)
(Section scheduled to be repealed on January 1, 2026)
(a) For the purpose of this Act, "dry needling", also known as intramuscular therapy, means an advanced needling skill or technique limited to the treatment of myofascial pain, using a single use, single insertion, sterile filiform needle (without the use of heat, cold, or any other added modality or medication), that is inserted into the skin or underlying tissues to stimulate trigger points. Dry needling may apply theory based only upon Western medical concepts, requires an examination and diagnosis, and treats specific anatomic entities selected according to physical signs. Dry needling does not include the stimulation of auricular points, utilization of distal points or non-local points, needle retention, application of retained electric stimulation leads, or the teaching or application of other acupuncture theory.
(b) A physical therapist licensed under this Act may only perform dry needling under the following conditions as determined by the Department by rule:
(1) Prior to completion of the education under
paragraph (2) of this subsection, successful completion of 50 hours of instruction in the following areas:
(A) the musculoskeletal and neuromuscular system;
(B) the anatomical basis of pain mechanisms,
chronic pain, and referred pain;
(C) myofascial trigger point theory; and
(D) universal precautions.
(2) Completion of at least 30 hours of didactic
course work specific to dry needling.
(3) Successful completion of at least 54 practicum
hours in dry needling course work approved by the Federation of State Boards of Physical Therapy or its successor (or substantial equivalent), as determined by the Department. Each instructional course shall specify what anatomical regions are included in the instruction and describe whether the course offers introductory or advanced instruction in dry needling. Each instruction course shall include the following areas:
(A) dry needling technique;
(B) dry needling indications and
(C) documentation of dry needling;
(D) management of adverse effects;
(E) practical psychomotor competency; and
(F) the Occupational Safety and Health
Administration's Bloodborne Pathogens standard.
Postgraduate classes qualifying for completion of the
mandated 54 hours of dry needling shall be in one or more modules, with the initial module being no fewer than 27 hours, and therapists shall complete at least 54 hours in no more than 12 months.
(4) Completion of at least 200 patient treatment
sessions under supervision as determined by the Department by rule.
(5) Successful completion of a competency examination
as approved by the Department.
Each licensee is responsible for maintaining records of the completion of the requirements of this subsection (b) and shall be prepared to produce such records upon request by the Department.
(c) A newly-licensed physical therapist shall not practice dry needling for at least one year from the date of initial licensure unless the practitioner can demonstrate compliance with subsection (b) through his or her pre-licensure educational coursework.
(d) Dry needling may only be performed by a licensed physical therapist and may not be delegated to a physical therapist assistant or support personnel.
(e) A physical therapist shall not advertise, describe to patients or the public, or otherwise represent that dry needling is acupuncture, nor shall he or she represent that he or she practices acupuncture unless separately licensed under the Acupuncture Practice Act.
(Source: P.A. 100-418, eff. 8-25-17.)