Points - Recent Research
Auricular Acupuncture at the "Shenmen" and "Point Zero" Points Induced Parasympathetic Activation
Differential Localization of Pain-Related and Pain-Unrelated Neural Responses for Acupuncture at BL60 Using BOLD fMRI
Efficacy of a Novel Herbal Multicomponent Traditional Chinese Medicine Therapy Approach in Patients with Atopic Dermatitis

Auricular Acupuncture at the "Shenmen" and "Point Zero" Points Induced Parasympathetic Activation

Arai YC, et al. Department of Surgery, Toki General Hospital, Gifu 509-5193, Japan ; Multidisciplinary Pain Centre, Aichi Medical University, School of Medicine, 21 Karimata, Aichi-gun, Aichi, Nagakute 480-1195, Japan.

Purpose. Since auricular acupuncture is a diagnostic and treatment system based on normalizing the body's dysfunction, auricular acupuncture has been applied for pain relief, relaxation, and so on. These techniques would modulate the autonomic nerve system, thereby inducing the above-mentioned effects. The aim was to see the effect of auricular acupuncture applied to the "Shenmen" and "Point Zero" points on the postoperative heart rate variability (HRV). Methods. Twenty-six patients who underwent hemicolectomy under general anesthesia were randomized into the control or the acupuncture group. After the operation and before emergence, the acupuncture group received auricular acupuncture. An electrocardiographic unit was placed for recording the autonomic nervous activities. Results. The low frequency (LF)/high frequency (HF) ratio of HRV increased (P = 0.0007) in the control, but the ratio in the acupuncture did not change. There were significant differences between the ratios of the two groups at 3 : 00, 4 : 00, and 5 : 00. HF of the acupuncture group tended to be higher. HFs of the acupuncture group were significantly higher than those of the control group at 3 : 00, 4 : 00, and 5 : 00. Conclusion. Auricular acupuncture kept the LF/HF ratio at lower levels and HF at higher levels during postoperative period in the patients who had undergone hemicolectomy.

Evid Based Complement Alternat Med.2013;2013:945063. doi: 10.1155/2013/945063. Epub 2013 Jun 4.

Source: PubMed

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Differential Localization of Pain-Related and Pain-Unrelated Neural Responses for Acupuncture at BL60 Using BOLD fMRI

Kim NH, et al. Department of Cardiology and Neurology of Korean Medicine, College of Korean Medicine, Kyung Hee University, Seoul, Republic of Korea.

The objective of this study was to differentiate between pain-related and pain-unrelated neural responses of acupuncture at BL60 to investigate the specific effects of acupuncture. A total of 19 healthy volunteers were evaluated. fMRI was performed with sham or verum acupuncture stimulation at the left BL60 before and after local anesthesia. To investigate the relative BOLD signal effect for each session, a one-sample t-test was performed for individual contrast maps, and a paired t-test to investigate the differences between the pre- and post-anesthetic signal effects. Regarding verum acupuncture, areas that were more activated before local anesthesia included the superior, middle, and medial frontal gyri, inferior parietal lobule, superior temporal gyrus, thalamus, middle temporal gyrus, cingulate gyrus, culmen, and cerebellar tonsil. The postcentral gyrus was more deactivated before local anesthesia. After local anesthesia, the middle occipital gyrus, inferior temporal gyrus, postcentral gyrus, precuneus, superior parietal lobule, and declive were deactivated. Pre-anesthetic verum acupuncture at BL60 activated areas of vision and pain transmission. Post-anesthetic verum acupuncture deactivated brain areas of visual function, which is considered to be a pain-unrelated acupuncture response. It indicates that specific effects of acupoint BL60 are to control vision sense as used in the clinical setting.

Evid Based Complement Alternat Med.2013;2013:804696. doi: 10.1155/2013/804696. Epub 2013 Jun 18.

Source: PubMed

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Efficacy of a Novel Herbal Multicomponent Traditional Chinese Medicine Therapy Approach in Patients with Atopic Dermatitis

Li S, et al. Medical Corporation Soujikai, Osaka, Japan.

Background: In Western medicine, the application of topical steroids and oral antihistaminic or antiallergic agents is the main treatment option for atopic dermatitis (AD). However, instead of these therapies the disease may remain intractable in some patients, resulting in long-term exposure to these chemical agents and consequently leading to concerns about possible adverse drug reactions. Methods: In the present open-label clinical study, the efficacy and safety of a novel multi component TCM therapy approach for AD was investigated. Therefore, 94 patients received the formula I (10 crude drugs) orally, combined with both the lotion II (7 crude drugs), and the ointment III (8 crude drugs). Each crude drug was extracted with boiling water in a defined manner, concentrated, and reworked into the preparations. Standardized scores were used for evaluating the severities of AD (clinical severity 0-4) and pruritus (pruritus score 0-4). Results: Both scores had significantly improved at the end of a 12 month treatment (P<0.001). Eosinophil ratio and serum IgE levels, which were elevated in AD patients, were significantly reduced at the end of therapy (P<0.01). In 32 of 94 treated patients the condition markedly improved, in 59 cases AD improved, and in 3 patients there was a slight improvement with no case of ineffective treatment. There was no hint of renal or hepatic toxicity or any other adverse effects. Conclusion: The present study confirms that the 3 newly developed herbal TCM combination preparations are clinically efficacious on AD, accomplishing a significant reduction in both clinical and pruritus scores as well as in eosinophil ratios and serum IgE levels.

Forsch Komplementmed.2013;20(3):189-96. doi: 10.1159/000351280. Epub 2013 Jun 24.

Source: PubMed

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