Research Article2023-08-31Sharareh Roshanzamir1, Yas Haririan1, Rezvan Ghaderpanah2, Leila Sadat Mohamadi Jahromi1,*, Alireza Dabbaghmanesh3J Acupunct Meridian Stud 2023; 16(4): 133-138Abstract
Background: Coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) accounts for more than half of all adult cardiac surgeries worldwide. Post-operative chest pain is a common CABG complication and can cause significant discomfort.Objectives: Because taking large amounts of analgesics can have many side effects, we evaluated whether acupuncture effectively reduces pain and the use of analgesics by CABG patients.Methods: In this clinical trial, 30 patients who had recently undergone CABG were randomly allocated to two groups. For both groups, exercise therapy and routine analgesics were recommended. The intervention group underwent bilateral acupuncture in distinct acupoints, including the HT3, HT4, HT5, HT6, HT7, PC3, PC5, PC6, and PC7 for 10 daily sessions constantly. Visual analog scale (VAS) and analgesic use were evaluated in both groups at baseline and after completing the 10-day treatment.Results: Our analysis revealed significant decreases in the mean VAS scores in both the intervention and the control group, and that the reduction was more significant in the acupuncture group (p < 0.001). Moreover, analgesic use was significantly lower in the acupuncture group when compared with the control group (p < 0.001).Conclusion: Our findings highlight acupuncture as an alternative method of controlling CABG-associated post-operative chest pain and reducing the use of analgesics, which might have many side effects.
Clinical Study Protocol2022-08-31
A Clinical Trial Protocol to Compare the Effect of Dry Needling and Acupoint Dry Needling on Wrist Flexor Spasticity after StrokeNajmeh Nazari1, Noureddin Nakhostin Ansari1,2, Soofia Naghdi1,2,*, Pablo Herrero Gallego3, Roshanak Honarpisheh1J Acupunct Meridian Stud 2022; 15(4): 273-278Abstract
Background: Stroke is the leading cause of disability in adults worldwide, with spasticity after stroke being one of the more common complications. Dry needling (DN) has been demonstrated to decrease spasticity in stroke patients, although its effects on improving function remain unclear. The purpose of this study protocol is to compare the short-term effects of DN versus acupoint DN on wrist flexor spasticity and upper extremity function in patients with stroke.Methods: A double-blind, randomized clinical trial will be conducted to include patients with stroke and upper extremity spasticity and functional disability. Twenty-four patients with stroke will be randomly assigned to either the DN or acupoint DN (DNap) group. These groups will receive three DN sessions during a one-week period of the wrist flexor muscles or at the LI4 & TE5 acupoints, respectively. The primary outcome measure is the Modified Modified Ashworth Scale (MMAS) of spasticity. The secondary outcomes are the Fugl–Meyer Assessment of motor function (FMA) and the goniometry to assess the active and passive range of motion of the wrist. Data will be collected at baseline, immediately after the end of three sessions DN, and at a one-week follow-up visit.Discussion: The results of this comparative study will help to determine the more effective method for reducing spasticity and improving motor function in patients with stroke.
Letter to the Editor2022-10-31Rujittika Mungmunpuntipantip1,*, Viroj Wiwanitkit2J Acupunct Meridian Stud 2022; 15(5): 279-279
Effect of Acupressure on Pain during Inferior Alveolar Nerve Block Injection in Children Aged 5-10 Years Old - An Experimental StudyAyushi Shashikant Gurharikar, Devendra Nagpal*, Prabhat Singh Yadav, Purva Chaudhari, Kavita Hotwani, Gagandeep LambaJ Acupunct Meridian Stud 2023; 16(4): 127-132Abstract
Background: Acupressure, which is related to acupuncture, is a noninvasive therapy suitable for use in children. However, data examining acupressure’s effects on the pain of local anesthetic injection in children are sparse.Objectives: The purpose of this study was to evaluate acupressure’s effects on the pain of local anesthetic injection in children.Methods: This randomized, double-blind, parallel-group clinical study included 37 5- to 10-year-olds who had an inferior alveolar nerve block (IANB) for a mandibular extraction and were randomized to one of two groups: acupressure (study group) or non-acupressure (control group). The Wong-Baker FACES Pain Rating Scale (WBFPS) and the Sound, Eye, Motor (SEM) scale were utilized for subjective and objective pain assessment during injection.Results: The objective and subjective assessment of pain during injection significantly differed between the groups, with the acupressure group displaying lower scores.Conclusion: Acupressure at the extra one point (EX-HN1) reduced pain during IANB injection in 5- to 10-year-olds and can be used as an adjunct to conventional measures like topical anesthesia to reduce pain.
Research Article2022-10-31Maria Eliza Consolação Soares1,*, Alessandra de Souza Araújo1, Isabela Carvalhaes Lagares Pinto1, Luiza Silveira Araújo Barbosa1, Maria Cristina Borsatto2, Rodrigo Galo3J Acupunct Meridian Stud 2022; 15(5): 307-313Abstract
Background: Anxiety is an important problem in children in dental clinics. Acupressure may be a useful tool to assist in dental procedures in anxious children.Objectives: This pilot study was performed to examine the effects of acupressure on dental anxiety in children undergoing restorative procedures.Methods: Fourteen children aged 7-10 years and with at least one primary molar with caries on the dentine were included in the study. The participants also needed to score at least one point on the modified Venham Picture Test (VPTm) for the determination of anxiety. The children were randomly allocated to two groups: group A — non-documented points for the reduction of anxiety and induction of relaxation; group B — documented points (EX-HN3, Shen Men of auricular acupuncture). The anxiety scale was administered on three occasions: prior to the application of acupressure; immediately after sitting in the dental chair to undergo restorative treatment; and after removal of acupressure at the end of the restorative procedure. Heart rate (HR) was measured when each child sat in the dental chair, after the removal of carious tissue, and after the removal of acupressure.Results: After the procedure, HR (as an indicator of anxiety) was statistically significantly lower in group B than group A (p = 0.02). However, there was no significant difference between the groups regarding anxiety before and during the restorative procedure (VPTm and HR: p > 0.05).Conclusion: The children who received acupressure on documented points for the reduction of anxiety had a significantly lower HR after the restorative procedure. No significant between-group difference was found regarding anxiety measured using a psychometric evaluation (VPTm).
Research Article2023-06-30Feng Xiong1, Ruimin Xu2, Tongju Li3, Jinyu Wang1,4, Qingchuan Hu3, Xiaojing Song1, Guangjun Wang1, Huanhuan Su3, Shuyong Jia1, Shuyou Wang1, Zongxiang Zhu2,5, Weibo Zhang1,*J Acupunct Meridian Stud 2023; 16(3): 101-108Abstract
Background: The biophysical properties of the meridian system, an important concept of traditional Chinese medicine, include low impedance, resounding voice, and high acoustic conductance, all of which are helpful for elucidating the essence of meridians.Objectives: To visualize the human pericardium meridian (PC) based on the resounding voice property of meridians.Methods: Visualization of the PC was performed by injection of fluorescein sodium at the PC6 acupoint (Neiguan) on the PC. Before injection, percussion active points (PAPs) were identified by the virtue of their resounding voice properties. After injection, the trajectories of fluorescein migration throughout the body surface were recorded and analyzed. The distribution of fluorescein in the tissue was further studied using cross-sections of hind limbs of mini-pigs, in which fluorescein was injected into low impedance points.Results: The identified PAP lines were colocalized with PC. Following intradermal fluorescein injection, 1-3 fluorescent lines, which were unrelated to the arm veins, were observed in 7 of 10 participants; 85.4% of fluorescent signals were coincident with PAPs and their intensity had a negative correlation with the body mass index (r = –0.56, p = 0.045). Cross-sections showed a Y-shaped fluorescence pattern where the two migration lines on the surface were the two vertices of the “Y.”Conclusion: The trajectories of fluorescein in the body are suggestive of the anatomical structure of meridians. The PC is related to the deep horizontal interstitial channels that connect to the body surface through vertical interstitial spaces. These biophysical properties and techniques for meridian visualization are valuable for revealing the anatomical structure of meridians.
Letter to the Editor2022-10-31
Research Article2023-06-30Amanda Caroline Gomes Graboschii1,*, Carolina Carvalho dos Santos Lira1, Jackellyne Laís Ferreira Lins2, Marcia Kikuyo Notomi3, Pierre Barnabé Escodro1J Acupunct Meridian Stud 2023; 16(3): 95-100Abstract
Background: Cardiorespiratory depression caused by anesthesia decreases the quality and increases the time of postoperative recovery. The acupoint Governor Vessel 26 (GV26) is a resuscitation point that can reverse this depression and can be safely used without side effects.Objectives: The objective of this study was to evaluate the stimulation and anesthetic recovery time of GV26 in bitches submitted to ovariohysterectomy (OH) under dissociative anesthesia.Methods: As pre-anesthetic protocol, acepromazine 0.2% (0.1 mg/kg) and tramadol hydrochloride (2 mg/kg) was used, and induction was performed using midazolam (0.5 mg/kg) and ketamine (10 mg/kg). For the control group, standard procedure was performed for OH, with anesthetic recovery and post-surgical procedures. For the acupuncture group (AP), the stimulation of acupoint GV26 was performed 20 minutes after the anesthetic induction and maintained for 5 minutes. Respiratory rate, amplitude (superficial, normal or deep), type of respiratory movement (abdominal, abdominocostal or thoracoabdominal), heart rate, capillary filling time, temperature, presence or absence of laryngotracheal reflex, presence or absence of interdigital reflexes were assessed immediately before PAM application, and 2 (T1), 5 (T2), 10 (T3), 15 (T4), 20 (T5), 25 (T6) and 30 (T7) minutes after treatment. The results were tabulated and statistically analyzed.Results: When comparing the AP group with the control group, an improvement in amplitude of the chest cage was observed at all times, where the animals remained in normal or deep respiratory amplitude. The heart rate was significantly higher for the AP group (155.5 ± 34.4 bpm) than the control group at T1 (105.1 ± 15.4 bpm), while recovery time was lower for the AP group (54.1 ± 14.9 min) when compared to control group (79.9 ± 17.9 min).Conclusion: The present paper demonstrated the efficacy of GV26 in maintaining adequate respiratory amplitude and decreasing the anesthetic recovery time.
Electroacupuncture Promotes Motor Function Recovery in MCAO/R Rats by Activating Astrocyte-Related PI3K/AKT PathwayXiao-Qing Zhang1,2,*,†, Yi-He Wang1,2,†, Li Sun1, Bao-Qiang Dong1,2, Yue-Jiao Sui1,2, Jia-Zi Dong1,2, Yang Han1,2J Acupunct Meridian Stud 2022; 15(5): 322-332Abstract
Background: Electroacupuncture (EA) is a widely used traditional Chinese medicine method to manage various diseases, including cerebral ischemia-reperfusion injury (CIRI).Objectives: We assessed the neuroprotective effects of EA and examined its mechanism in a rat model of the middle cerebral artery occlusion-reperfusion (MCAO/R). The gait analysis was performed to evaluate the neuroprotective effects. Western blot and immunohistochemistry assays were carried out to determine the molecular mechanisms of EA.Methods: Male SD rats were randomly divided into the sham operation group, right MCAO/R group, and EA group. EA was administered every day (4/20 Hz, 10 min/1 d) at the following acupoints: Baihui (DU20), Yintang (EX-HN3), and Zusanli (ST36). Gait and motor function were analyzed from day 8 onward.Results: The plantar support and balance coordination of MCAO/R rats decreased, and the cellular structure of the ischemic penumbra was unclear. EA improved the gait dynamics of the rats, adjusted the cell structure, further activated astrocytes, and increased the expression and phosphorylation of phosphoinositide 3-kinase/protein kinase B (PI3K/PKB or AKT).Conclusion: EA promoted astrocyte-related effects in the rat model. Our findings suggest that the neuroprotective mechanism of EA may be related to the activation of the PI3K/AKT signaling pathway. The intervention enhanced brain protection and improved motor functions.
Scalp Acupuncture on the Immediate and Prolonged Motor Recovery in Spinal Cord Injury: a Case ReportGeetha B. Shetty1, Nanjeshgowda H L2,*J Acupunct Meridian Stud 2023; 16(5): 188-192Abstract
Spinal cord injury (SCI) is one of the main causes of lifelong motor impairment and is associated with important secondary complications. Thus, multifaceted treatments are needed for early functional recovery. Currently, in cases of SCI, surgery, stem cell treatment, medication, and physical therapy are used to repair and restore neuronal activity. Additionally, encouraging results have been reported on the use of acupuncture to modulate neuronal plasticity. Here, we present an SCI case involving a burst fracture at the L3 level, which was treated for 21 days using scalp acupuncture with residential physical therapy. Activation of the motor area was observed after the 1st day of treatment, with the patient completely regaining power and range of motion in the knees, Additionally, over 21 days, the patient exhibited markedly improved motor recovery and functional outcomes, which had not been observed over the previous six months. This report highlights the importance of complementing scalp acupuncture with intensive physical therapy for better motor recovery.
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Hoon-Gi Kim*J Acupunct Meridian Stud 2022; 15(1): 50-60Abstract
The purpose of this paper is to compare the biological research carried out in North Korea with the modern outcomes in the same field, from a historical perspective. In the 1960s, the group led by Bong-Han Kim asserted the existence of a fundamental circulatory system in the human body. Their findings were introduced in five papers as well as in the newspaper Rodong Sinmun. The size of the group, the range of equipment, and their findings expanded gradually, and the final paper on blood cells would be only published one of over sixty papers reported at that time. In the five papers, some unclear and inconsistent contents were found. Meanwhile, in the 2000s, PVS (primo vascular system) researchers have published over one hundred papers to prove the existence of this novel system. Some trends have emerged in approximately sixty papers as follows: The research on the identification of the anatomical and histological characteristics has gradually expanded to encompass the system’s own functioning. Also, new visual results (e.g. before and after dyeing, and its comparison with blood clots) and the exploration of possible medical applications (e.g. cancer metastasis channels or stem cells location) have been proposed. However, it is difficult to identify papers which comprehensively represented the elements claimed by Bong-Han Kim’s group. In addition, papers have been published more in alternative or Oriental medicine journals than in Western biomedical journals. It seems necessary to report more existence of the system in one laboratory animal and in more influential journals.
Fatma El-Zahraa A. Mustafa*J Acupunct Meridian Stud 2022; 15(1): 4-11Abstract
The primo vascular system (PVS) is of great interest to scientists in the last few years. The PVS plays a role in stem cell migration, immune function, erythropoiesis, tissue regeneration, and cancer metastasis. Discovered by Bong Han Kim in 1960, the PVS was described as a new, independent system that is distributed in the body of different animals. Since then, several cells have been discovered as important constituents of the PVS. Endothelial cells are hallmarks for the identification of the PVS, as they line the sinuses of the primo vessels and are characterized by their arrangement of rod-shaped nuclei in a parallel, broken-line fashion along the primo vessels. Immune cells as mast cells, eosinophils, neutrophils, and lymphocytes are also hallmarks for the identification of the PVS. One of the most interesting cells in the PVS are p-microcells. Primo nodes are a stem cell niche due to their p-microcells content, which express stem cell biomarkers CD133 and Oct 4. Mature erythrocytes and hematopoietic stem cells have also been observed in the PVS. Hematopoietic stem cells were observed in the PVS. Hematopoietic Stem Cells are the source of the cellular component of blood. Additionally, adrenaline and noradrenaline-producing cells, mesothelial cells, and smooth-muscle-like cells have also been described in the PVS.
Effect of Acupuncture on Physical Symptoms and Quality of Life in Treatment-Resistant Major Depressive Disorder and Bipolar Disorder: a Single-Arm Longitudinal StudyYuto Matsuura1,*, Seiji Hongo2, Hiroshi Taniguchi1, Fumiko Yasuno1, Tomomi Sakai1J Acupunct Meridian Stud 2022; 15(6): 336-346Abstract
Background: Acupuncture is a non-pharmacological therapy used clinically for mood disorders. Relief of physical symptoms with acupuncture treatment may lead to relief of depressive symptoms and improvement of quality of life (QoL). Few studies have examined the effect of acupuncture on the physical symptoms and QoL of patients with mood disorders.Objectives: To examine the effect of acupuncture on physical symptoms and QoL of patients with treatment-resistant major depressive disorder (MDD) and bipolar disorder (BD).Methods: This prospective, single-arm, longitudinal study included patients with MDD and BD from an outpatient psychiatric clinic. Acupuncture was performed weekly for 12 weeks in combination with regular treatment, with fixed acupoints and individualized treatment for each patient. Psychiatric symptoms were evaluated using the Himorogi Self-Rating Depression Scale (HSDS) and Himorogi Self-Rating Anxiety Scale (HSAS). Physical symptoms such as physical pain, gastrointestinal symptoms, and sleep disorders were evaluated using the Japanese version of the Somatic Symptom Scale-8 (SSS-8) and Visual Analog Scale (VAS). QoL was evaluated using the 8-item Short-Form (SF-8) Health Survey.Results: A total of 36 patients (15 MDD and 21 BD patients) were analyzed. After 12 weeks of acupuncture, HSDS and HSAS scores significantly decreased (p < 0.05). Physical symptoms evaluated using SSS-8 and VAS scores also significantly improved (p < 0.05). In particular, neck pain and insomnia improved at an early stage. Among the SF-8 subscales, scores of bodily pain, general health perception, role limitations due to emotional problems, and mental health significantly increased (p < 0.05).Conclusion: Acupuncture may improve not only psychiatric symptoms but also physical symptoms and QoL in patients with treatment-resistant mood disorders. Further studies are required for confirmation of the preliminary data collected thus far.
Postoperative Acupuncture is as Effective as Preoperative Acupuncture or Meloxicam in Dogs Undergoing Ovariohysterectomy: a Blind Randomized StudyAna Carla Zago Basilio Ferro1, Caroline Cannolas2, Juliana Cristianini Reginato2, Stelio Pacca Loureiro Luna1,*J Acupunct Meridian Stud 2022; 15(3): 181-188Abstract
Background: Acupuncture has the same analgesic effect as non-steroidal antiinflammatory drugs and opioids. It is challenging to perform preoperative acupuncture in unmanageable animals, while the residual postoperative anesthetic effect facilitates the performance of acupuncture postoperatively.Objectives: To compare preoperative acupuncture or meloxicam versus postoperative acupuncture for postoperative analgesia after ovariohysterectomy.Methods: This is a horizontal prospective positive control blind randomized experimental study. Thirty-six dogs were randomly divided into three groups: GA (preemptive acupuncture), GPA (postoperative acupuncture), and GM (meloxicam 0.2 mg/kg IV preoperatively). After sedation with acepromazine (0.05 mg/kg IM), anesthesia was induced with propofol (5.3 ± 0.3 mg/kg) and maintained with isoflurane/O2. Fentanyl (2 μg/kg, IV) was administered immediately before surgery. Bilateral acupuncture was performed at acupoints Large intestine 4, Spleen 6, and Stomach 36 for 20 minutes, before (GA) or immediately after surgery (GPA). Pain was evaluated by an observer blind to the treatment using the Glasgow scale before and for 24 hours after ovariohysterectomy. Dogs with a score ≥ 6 received rescue analgesia with morphine (0.5 mg/kg IM). Nonparametric data were analyzed by the Kruskal–Wallis test, followed by Dunn’s test and parametric data by ANOVA followed by Tukey’s test.Results: Two GA and one GPA dogs received rescue analgesia once. Two GM dogs received rescue analgesia and one of those was treated again twice. There were no differences in the number of dogs receiving rescue analgesia between groups (p = 0.80).Conclusion: Postoperative acupuncture was as effective as preoperative acupuncture or meloxicam in female dogs undergoing ovariohysterectomy.
Melike Pündük Yılmaz1,*, Saadet Yazıcı2, İsmail Yılmaz3J Acupunct Meridian Stud 2023; 16(3): 89-94Abstract
Background: Nausea and vomiting are among the most common medical problems during pregnancy, affecting 80% of mothers.Objectives: This study was conducted as a randomized controlled experimental study to determine the effect of acupressure applied by a wristband to the pericardium 6 (PC6) point on nausea and vomiting during pregnancy.Methods: The study population consisted of 74 pregnant women between 6-14 weeks of gestation who were experiencing nausea and vomiting. The study data was collected with personal information from the Pregnancy-Unique Quantification of Emesis Scale (PUQE). Experimental and control groups were selected by a simple random method. The experimental group wore acupressure wristbands for one week, while the control group did not use any method to alleviate nausea and vomiting. One week later, the PUQE scale was applied to both groups.Results: The acupressure wristbands decreased the nausea and vomiting scores of the pregnant women in the experimental group without statistical significance but did not change the nausea and vomiting scores of the pregnant women in the control group.Conclusion: Acupressure wristbands can be used to prevent nausea and vomiting during pregnancy.
Kazufumi Takahashi2,3,*, Xiaoming Wang2,3, Daiyu Shinohara1, Kenji Imai2,3J Acupunct Meridian Stud 2022; 15(2): 114-120Abstract
Background: The cardiovascular system and airway smooth muscles are regulated by the autonomic nervous system.Objectives: This study investigated the effect of electrical acupuncture stimulation near the cervical sympathetic ganglia on heart rate variability and respiratory function.Methods: This prospective, single-center study at Teikyo Heisei University recruited 24 healthy adults randomly assigned to no-stimulation and electroacupuncture (EA) groups in a crossover trial with a 2-week washout period. After 5 min of rest, a 5-min rest or acupuncture stimulus was delivered, followed by a further 5 min of rest for both groups. EA, at 2-Hz (level of no pain), was delivered near the left cervical ganglia at the level of the sixth cervical vertebra in the EA group.Results: The high-frequency component of the heart rate variability was significantly higher in the EA group than that in the no-stimulation group. Further, there was a significant increase in the high-frequency component of the heart rate in the EA group during the stimulation compared to before and after stimulation. Heart rate decreased significantly during EA compared to before stimulation in the EA group. Regarding respiratory function, forced vital capacity, forced expiratory volume in 1 s, and peak flow significantly increased in the EA group compared with the no-stimulation group, and after stimulation compared with before stimulation.Conclusion: Stimulation with 2-Hz EA near the cervical sympathetic trunk increased parasympathetic nerve activity and reduced heart rate. However, the respiratory function was activated via increased sympathetic nerve activity. Therefore, 2-Hz EA may be effective for autonomic nerve regulation in bronchial stenosis.