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Home > Newsletters > May 2007 > Recent Research

Points - Recent Research

Effect of Acupuncture on Pubertal Development of Rats and Rabbits at Different Developmental Stages

Interventions for Preventing and Treating Pelvic and Back Pain in Pregnancy

Chinese Herbal Medicines for Hyperthyroidism


Effect of Acupuncture on Pubertal Development of Rats and Rabbits at Different Developmental Stages

Zhaohui Z, et al. Key Laboratory of Reproductive Medicine, The First Affiliated Hospital to Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing 210029, China; Department of Acupuncture, The First Affiliated Hospital to Nanjing Medical University, Nanjing 210029, China.

Physiological and endocrine studies on sexual development in animals
and effects of acupuncture on sexual development are limited.
Therefore, we investigated the effect of electro-acupuncture (EA) on
the arcuate nucleus (Arc) and release of gonadotropin-releasing
hormone (GnRH) in animals at different developmental stages. In
Experiment 1, EA stimulation (30Hz) was performed for 30min per day in
EA group of rabbits for 48 days, while the control group (mature
rabbits) was not given EA. Arc discharges in those two groups were
measured after the 48-day treatment. Arc discharge was also measured
in the pre-pubertal group (as control) without EA treatment. Then, all
three groups were treated with transient EA for 30min and Arc
discharges were determined again. In Experiment 2, EA (3Hz) at the
same acupoints or non-acupoints as that in the rabbits was performed
for 20min per day in different developmental group of Sprague-Dawley
rats for 10 days. GnRH mRNA expression in the hypothalamus of rats was
determined using RT-PCR and real-time PCR. The serum sexual hormone,
sperm count, and body weight was measured. The results showed that the Arc discharge (P<0.01), testosterone (T) (P<0.01) and sperm count
(P<0.01) in male rabbits were reduced by repeated EA. However, the
body weight of rabbits was not changed after EA compared to the
control in Experiment 1. In Experiment 2, GnRH mRNA expression in rats
of the early pubertal group (EPG) and adult group (AG) were
significantly depressed after repeated EA at acupoints (P<0.01). The
sexual hormones were negatively influenced by repeated EA during
puberty. Sperm count was reduced significantly after repeated EA at
time of puberty (P<0.01). Repeated EA did not influence body weight of
rats (P>0.01) and structures of the gonadial tissues during
development. The results suggested that repeated EA is a good option
that can be considered for regulating the function of the
hypothalamus-pituitary-gonad (HPG) axis during puberty.

Neuropeptides. 2007 Apr 17

Source PubMed

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Interventions for Preventing and Treating Pelvic and Back Pain in Pregnancy

Pennick V, Young G.

BACKGROUND: More than two-thirds of pregnant women experience back
pain and almost one-fifth experience pelvic pain. The pain increases
with advancing pregnancy and interferes with work, daily activities
and sleep. OBJECTIVES: To assess the effects of interventions for
preventing and treating back and pelvic pain in pregnancy. SEARCH
STRATEGY: We searched the Cochrane Pregnancy and Childbirth Review
Group's Trials Register (February 2006). SELECTION CRITERIA:
Randomised controlled trials of any treatment to prevent or reduce the
incidence or severity of back or pelvic pain in pregnancy. DATA
COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS: Two authors independently assessed trial
quality and extracted data. MAIN RESULTS: We found no studies dealing
specifically with prevention of back or pelvic pain. We included eight
studies (1305 participants) that examined the effects of adding
various pregnancy-specific exercises, physiotherapy, acupuncture and
pillows to usual prenatal care.For women with low-back pain,
participating in strengthening exercises, sitting pelvic tilt
exercises (standardised mean difference (SMD) -5.34; 95% confidence
interval (CI) -6.40 to -4.27), and water gymnastics reduced pain
intensity and back pain-related sick leave (relative risk (RR) 0.40;
95% CI 0.17 to 0.92) better than usual prenatal care alone.The
specially-designed Ozzlo pillow was more effective than a regular one
in relieving back pain (RR 1.84; 95% CI 1.32 to 2.55), but is no
longer commercially available. Both acupuncture and stabilising
exercises relieved pelvic pain more than usual prenatal care.
Acupuncture gave more relief from evening pain than exercises. For
women with both pelvic and back pain, in one study, acupuncture was
more effective than physiotherapy in reducing the intensity of their
pain; stretching exercises resulted in more total pain relief (60%)
than usual care (11%); and 60% of those who received acupuncture
reported less intense pain, compared to 14% of those receiving usual
prenatal care. Women who received usual prenatal care reported more
use of analgesics, physical modalities and sacroiliac belts. AUTHORS'
CONCLUSIONS: All but one study had moderate to high potential for
bias, so results must be viewed cautiously. Adding pregnancy-specific
exercises, physiotherapy or acupuncture to usual prenatal care appears
to relieve back or pelvic pain more than usual prenatal care alone,
although the effects are small. We do not know if they actually
prevent pain from starting in the first place. Water gymnastics appear
to help women stay at work. Acupuncture shows better results compared
to physiotherapy.

Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2007 Apr 18;(2)

Source: PubMed

[TOP]


Chinese Herbal Medicines for Hyperthyroidism

Zen X, Yuan Y, Liu Y, Wu T, Han S.

BACKGROUND: Hyperthyroidism is a disease in which excessive amounts of thyroid hormones circulate in the blood. Patients, among other things
suffer from tachycardia, warm moist skin and raised body temperature.
The treatment of hyperthyroidism includes symptom relief and therapy
with antithyroid medications, radioiodine and thyroidectomy. Medicinal
herbs are used alone or in combination with antithyroid agents to
treat hyperthyroidism in China and some other countries. OBJECTIVES:
To assess the effects of Chinese herbal medicines for treating
hyperthyroidism. SEARCH STRATEGY: Studies were obtained from
computerised searches of MEDLINE, EMBASE, The Cochrane Library, the
Chinese Biomedical Database. SELECTION CRITERIA: Randomised controlled trials comparing the effects of Chinese herbal medicines alone with Chinese herbal medicines combined with antithyroid drugs, radioiodine or both. DATA COLLECTION AND ANALYSIS: Three authors interviewed authors of all potentially relevant studies by telephone to verify randomisation procedures. One author entered data into a data
extraction form and another author verified the results of this
procedure. MAIN RESULTS: Thirteen relevant trials with 1770
participants were included. All of them were of low quality. Fifty-two
studies still need to be assessed because the original authors could
not be interviewed. None of these trials analysed mortality, health
related quality of life, economic outcomes or compliance. Compared to
antithyroid drugs alone the results showed that Chinese herbal
medicines combined with antithyroid drugs may offer benefits in
lowering relapse rates, reducing the incidence of adverse effects,
relieving symptoms, improving thyroid antibody status and thyroid
function. Two trials investigated Chinese herbal medicine versus
radioiodine and reported improvements in Anxiety, tachycardia and heat
intolerance. However, thyroid function - with the exception of
restored thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) - was not significantly
altered. AUTHORS' CONCLUSIONS: The results suggest that traditional
Chinese herbal medicines added to other routine treatment have a
therapeutic potential for people with hyperthyroidism. However, due to
methodological limitations, we could not identify a well-designed
trial to provide strong evidence for Chinese traditional herbal
medicine in the treatment of hyperthyroidism. Thus, we currently
cannot recommend any single preparation or formulation for clinical
use.

Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2007 Apr 18;(2)

Source: PubMed

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May 2007
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