Chinese Medicine, which stretches back at least 2,500 years, is currently used by 1/4 of the world's population. One could say that modern Western and traditional Chinese medicines are the two dominant medical systems in the world today.
In fact, when one combines the benefits of both, he/she can obtain the widest range of health benefits. For example, Chinese herbs and acupuncture may make it possible (w/ your M.D.'s permission) to take a lower dosage of modern medicines, to reduce their side effects, and/or to obtain an overall better effect. Acupuncture can also work to help prevent disease and maintain health in order to avoid extensive procedures and surgeries later on.
Whereas modern drugs and procedures may provide better emergency relief for serious conditions and traumas, acupuncture can enhance the healing process once these conditions are stable, as well as treat a variety of problems that either aren't so well-defined in Western medicine or aren't so effectively treated.