Meet Karen

Nationally certified in Oriental Medicine, Karen Borla is a Fellow of the American Board of Oriental Reproductive Medicine. She received her master of science in Acupuncture and Chinese Herbal Medicine from the New England School of Acupuncture, in Watertown, Mass.

Karen trained in Chinese Herbal Medicine at the China Beijing International Acupuncture Training Center in China, and with many masters in the United States.

Education a lifelong pursuit and I welcome every challenge as an invitation to learn.

My mentors

Love to learn…

Karen’s had a lifelong interest in natural and preventive healthcare. She has studied a variety of Asian bodywork therapies, martial arts, yoga, meditation and energy cultivation techniques.

Her most influential teachers include:

  • Rene J. Navarro, Dipl. Ac. – Shaolin kung fu, Tai Ji Chuan, Taoist meditative practices.
  • Dr. Ping Chan, L.Ac. – Acupuncture, herbal techniques and Tui Na for traumatic injury
  • Patrick Cunningham, L.Ac. – Structural anatomy, trigger and motor point needling.
  • Daniel Camburn, L.Ac. – Herbal medicine, Advanced gynecology and infertility
  • Sharon Weizenbaum – Advanced diagnostics and herbal medicine
  • Brugh Joy, M.D. – Heart centered meditation and psycho-spiritual techniques for self-realization


Ms. Borla has been in private practice in West Hartford, Connecticut since 2002, before which she practiced for three years at the Winchester Hospital Community Health Institute in Woburn, Massachusetts.

From 2010 until February 2018, she served as a board member of the Connecticut Society of Acupuncture & Oriental Medicine (CSAOM), the last four years as president, and was a Connecticut representative for the national organization, now known as the American Society of Acupuncturists, for six years, working to advocate for patients and advance the profession.

Many people ask me how I came to become an acupuncturist. It’s a story that is as long as my life, which is to say, I believe it was my fortune and my destiny. As a teenager growing up in the late 70s and early 80s, I had a penchant for reading and a strong curiosity. My family is large and close knit, and I was influenced by my older siblings and their friends.

Through them I was introduced to books of eastern philosophy, including Confuscious and Lau Tzu, and western teachers like Ram Das. I read about meditation, and chakras, and the body’s energy system. I devoured these books with joy and longing.

I am not sure how much I understood at the time, but I knew that in order to really understand, I needed a teacher, and I was sure that I was born in the wrong place at the wrong time to ever find one. I also had in my possession a used book on “women and herbs.” It was one of those hippie books that listed illness and what herbs could cure them. And whenever I had a touch of something, I would walk down to the health food store and buy a little bit of this or that from the bulk herb section and go home and cook them up. They always worked!

When it came time to decide what I would study in college, my practical nature won out, and since I was good at math and science, I went off to Flint, Michigan to study Electrical Engineering at GMI Engineering & Management Institute.

I worked in the field, first in manufacturing, and then in construction, for 7 years after graduating, but I never felt fulfilled or happy. I began to explore what I might do instead and started taking classes in anatomy and physiology and microbiology. I LOVED learning about the body! But still, I didn’t know what I would do.

At around this time, Bill Moyer’s had a special on PBS with Joseph Campbell; “The Power of Myth.” It was fascinating. In one episode, Joseph spoke about “following your bliss.” Shortly after that, someone in my anatomy class suggested that I consider going to acupuncture school. What? You can go to acupuncture school? He brought in his books to show me, and when I opened them up and saw the points and the meridians, my heart skipped a beat.

Those old books from my teenage years came flooding back to my memory. Was this my bliss? Can I really study this? I quit my engineering job two months later, and applied to the New England School of Acupuncture. My first day of school, the halls were filled with the smell of herbs and moxa. It was exotic, earthy, and somehow familiar. I pinched myself to see if it was real, and I have been pinching myself ever since.