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Acupuncture Holds Promise for Treating Inflammatory Disease | Media Relations

Acupuncture Holds Promise for Treating Inflammatory Disease | Media Relations | Acupuncture for gastrointestinal i.e. digestive system | Scoop.it

Acupuncture Holds Promise for Treating Inflammatory DiseaseRutgers-led study suggests pathways to alleviating inflammation in disorders such as sepsis, arthritisSunday, February 23, 2014
  

When acupuncture first became popular in the Western Hemisphere it had its doubters. It still does. But over time, through detailed observation, scientists have produced real evidence that ancient Chinese practitioners of the medical arts were onto something. 

Now new research documents a direct connection between the use of acupuncture and physical processes that could alleviate sepsis, a condition that often develops in hospital intensive care units, springs from infection and inflammation, and takes an estimated 250,000 lives in the United States every year. 

 

Photo: Rob FormanLuis Ulloa of Rutgers New Jersey Medical School says there may be future treatments for deadly inflammation that use either acupuncture or medications.High Res“Sepsis is the major cause of death in the hospital,” says Luis Ulloa of Rutgers New Jersey Medical School's Center for Immunity and Inflammation, who led the study, which has been published by the journal Nature Medicine. “But in many cases patients don’t die because of the infection. They die because of the inflammatory disorder they develop after the infection. So we hoped to study how to control the inflammatory disorder.”

 

The researchers already knew that stimulation of one of the body’s major nerves, the vagus nerve, triggers processes in the body that reduce inflammation, so they set out to see whether a form of acupuncture that sends a small electric current through that and other nerves could reduce inflammation and organ injury in septic mice. Ulloa explains that increasing the current magnifies the effect of needle placement, and notes that electrification is already FDA-approved for treating pain in human patients.   

When electroacupuncture was applied to mice with sepsis, molecules called cytokines that help limit inflammation were stimulated as predicted, and half of those mice survived for at least a week. There was zero survival among mice that did not receive acupuncture.

Ulloa and his team then probed further, to figure out exactly why the acupuncture treatments had succeeded. And they made a discovery that, on its face, was very disappointing. They found that when they removed adrenal glands – which produce hormones in the body – the electroacpuncture stopped working.

 

 Evidence that acupuncture produces beneficial effects continues to grow. That discovery presented a big potential roadblock to use of acupuncture for sepsis in humans, because most human cases of sepsis include sharply reduced adrenal function. In theory, electroacupuncture might still help a minority of patients whose adrenal glands work well, but not many others.

 

So the researchers dug even deeper – to find the specific anatomical changes that occurred when electroacupuncture was performed with functioning adrenal glands. Those changes included increased levels of dopamine, a substance that has important functions within the immune system. But they found that adding dopamine by itself did not curb the inflammation. They then substituted a drug called fenoldopam that mimics some of dopamine’s most positive effects, and even without acupuncture they succeeded in reducing sepsis-related deaths by 40 percent.

Ulloa considers the results a double triumph. 

On the one hand, he says, this research shows physical evidence of acupuncture’s value beyond any that has been demonstrated before. His results show potential benefits, he adds, not just for sepsis, but treating other inflammatory diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis and Crohn’s disease.   

On the other hand, by also establishing that a drug reduced sepsis deaths in mice, he has provided an innovative road map toward developing potential drugs for people. That road map may be crucial, because no FDA-approved drug to treat sepsis now exists. 

“I don’t even know whether in the future the best solution for sepsis will be electroacupuncture or some medicine that will mimic electroacupuncture,” Ulloa concludes. The bottom line, he says, is that this research has opened the door to both.


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Acupuncture Improves Appendicitis Recovery, New Study

Acupuncture Improves Appendicitis Recovery, New Study | Acupuncture for gastrointestinal i.e. digestive system | Scoop.it
Acupuncture improves recovery periods after appendectomy. New research finds intestinal function is sped up significantly.

 

on 01 May 2014.

 

Researchers conclude that combining acupuncture with conventional biomedical post-operative care improves patient outcomes for cases of appendicitis treated with surgical removal of the appendix. Acupuncture improved surgical recovery rates including a more rapid recovery of intestinal function. As a result, the research team concluded that acupuncture after an appendectomy is an effective modality for improving patient recoveries. 

Researchers from the Shanxi Hospital of Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) randomly divided 60 acute suppurative appendicitis cases equally into an acupuncture group and a control group. Suppurative appendicitis is a type of acute appendicitis with purulent exudate that is filled with bacteria and inflammation related fluids. This type of appendicitis is often severe, painful, late-stage and life threatening. The acupuncture group receiving the same care as the control group but with the addition of post-operative acupuncture treatments. The acupuncture group significantly outperformed the control group regarding the recovery of intestinal function. 

An appendectomy, surgical removal of the appendix, is often performed as an emergency procedure to prevent sepsis and morbidity. In the absence of access to surgical facilities, intravenous antibiotics are often used to prevent sepsis. Many cases treated with perioperatively with intravenous antibiotics resolve completely. Other cases require surgery. This is often performed laparoscopically, a minimally invasive surgical procedure when compared with an open operation.

The researchers investigated the effects of acupuncture on the recovery state of suppurative appendicitis patients who received laparoscopic appendectomies. Anesthesia combined with surgical trauma for the procedure requires a recovery period. A better and more rapid recovery period contributes to improved patient outcomes. After an appendectomy, the intestines are in a protective numb state due to the impact of the operation and anesthesia, causing the slowing down or even stopping of intestinal movement. Therefore, recovering the intestinal function as quickly as possible is critical in reducing the occurrence of intestinal adhesions and obstructions. 

The primary acupuncture points used in the study were Zhongwuan (CV12), Tianshu (ST25) and Shangjuxu (ST37). In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) theory, these points have special functions. CV12 is the front Mu point of the stomach, the influential point for all yang organs, regulates stomach qi and transforms rebellious qi. As a result, this point is indicated for the treatment of stomach and intestinal disorders. ST25 is the front Mu point of the Large Intestine, regulates the function of the intestines, regulates qi and eliminates stagnation. It is often used for the treatment of abdominal disorders including obstructions, diarrhea, pain, distention and edema. ST25 is also widely used in the treatment of menstrual disorders. ST37 is the lower He Sea of the large intestine and is a Sea of Blood point. ST37 regulates the intestines and stomach, clears damp-heat and eliminates accumulations. It is widely used in the treatment of abdominal disorders.

After the appendectomy, the control group received routine biochemical medications while the treated group received acupuncture plus routine biochemical medications. Acupuncture was applied on the first day following operation. The primary acupoints were Zusanli (ST36), CV12, ST37 and ST25. Secondary acupoints were chosen according to differential diagnoses of individual patients: Taichong (LV3) for hyperactivity of Liver-yang, Fenglong (ST40) for damp-heat retention in the Spleen and Neiguan (PC6) for nausea and vomiting. Once the deqi sensation was achieved with manual acupuncture, electroacupuncture was applied using a continuous wave at 6-9V for 30 minutes. Acupuncture was applied once daily for three consecutive days.

After the treatment, the researchers used standard measurements to determine intestinal motility and restoration of function. Acupuncture significantly improved the recovery rates of the first flatulence, borborygmus and defecation. Based on these results, the researchers conclude that timely acupuncture after an appendectomy speeds up the recovery of intestinal function and thus the recovery of the patient.

Reference:
Li, Pengfei, Junhua Ren, and Yonghong Dong. “Clinical observation of acupuncture on recovery of intestinal function after acute suppurative appendicitis.” Clinical Journal of Chinese Medicine 4 (2014): 59-60.

- See more at: http://www.healthcmi.com/Acupuncture-Continuing-Education-News/1302-acupuncture-improves-appendicitis-recovery-new-study#sthash.hY4oDzXq.dpuf

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The use of acupuncture in controlling the gag reflex in patients requiring an upper alginate impression: an audit : Article : British Dental Journal

The use of acupuncture in controlling the gag reflex in patients requiring an upper alginate impression: an audit : Article : British Dental Journal | Acupuncture for gastrointestinal i.e. digestive system | Scoop.it
The role of the BDJ is to inform its readers of ideas, opinions, developments and key issues in dentistry - clinical, practical and scientific - stimulating interest, debate and discussion amongst dentists of all disciplines.
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Acupuncture effectively improves appetite in patients with GI trace cancer - ONA

Acupuncture effectively improves appetite in patients with GI trace cancer - ONA | Acupuncture for gastrointestinal i.e. digestive system | Scoop.it
ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA—Appetite was improved in patients with GI cancer who received acupuncture therapy, according to a study presented at the Oncology Nursing Society (ONS) 39th Annual Congress.

 

Acupuncture effectively improves appetite in patients with GI tract cancer

ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA—Appetite was improved in patients with GI cancer who received acupuncture therapy, according to a study presented at the Oncology Nursing Society (ONS) 39th Annual Congress.

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Self-administered electroacupuncture provides symptomatic relief in a patient with sphincter of Oddi dysfunction: a patient's report [pancreas]-- Walter and Curtis 31 (4): 430 -- Acupuncture in Med...

Self-administered electroacupuncture provides symptomatic relief in a patient with sphincter of Oddi dysfunction: a patient's report [pancreas]-- Walter and Curtis 31 (4): 430 -- Acupuncture in Med... | Acupuncture for gastrointestinal i.e. digestive system | Scoop.it

Home > Volume 31, Issue 4 > ArticleAcupunct Med 2013;31:430-434 doi:10.1136/acupmed-2013-010437Clinical observationSelf-administered electroacupuncture provides symptomatic relief in a patient with sphincter of Oddi dysfunction: a patient's reportWolfgang Andreas Walter1, Hazel Clare Curtis2

+Author Affiliations

1Bristol, UK2Edinburgh, UKCorrespondence toDr Wolfgang Andreas Walter, 10 Belgrave Road, Bristol, BS8 2AB, UK;wolfgangwalter@gmail.comReceived 2 August 2013Accepted 21 August 2013Published Online First 5 September 2013

 

 

Abstract

 

A 46-year-old woman with differentially diagnosed sphincter of Oddi dysfunction (SOD) type III is described. After two and a half years of managing the condition with a conventional medical/pharmacological approach, the patient's symptoms worsened and she sought complementary approaches, starting traditional acupuncture treatment before receiving training from a practitioner of Western medical acupuncture to self-administer electroacupuncture. The frequency and intensity of severe night-time pain attacks reduced and, additionally, self-administered manual acupuncture during pain attacks resulted in quick, lasting, complete symptomatic pain resolution. This is the first published case report using electroacupuncture in the clinical management of this condition. It shows patient-administered electroacupuncture as a low-risk well-tolerated procedure which provided effective pain relief and reduced the frequency and severity of pain attacks. Self-administered acupuncture could be considered as a potential complementary medical approach for patients with SOD type III before resorting to endoscopic SO manometry and sphincterotomy which carry significant associated risks of pancreatitis.

KeywordsIntroduction

This case report is written by the patient and a general practitioner (GP) practising Western medical acupuncture, who provided training in self-administered electroacupuncture (EA) with the aim of reducing the frequency and severity of night-time pain attacks due to sphincter of Oddi dysfunction (SOD). Self-treatment from March 2012 to August 2013 has delivered lasting relief of symptoms and the patient intends to continue with EA indefinitely.

Case history

A 46-year-old woman had a two and a half-year history of episodic increasingly frequent severe biliary-type pain attacks. She had also suffered from less severe daily pain, arising soon after laparoscopic cholecystectomy in 2009. She was formally diagnosed as having SOD type III by a gastroenterologist. Her only other chronic health condition is well-controlled mild asthma.

The sphincter of Oddi (SO) is a muscular valve at the end of the common bile duct. Usually closed, it opens after a meal, modulated by both neural and hormonal pathways, to control the flow of bile and pancreatic juices into the second part of the duodenum.1 SOD is an uncommon benign non-calculous disorder characterised by a pathophysiologically spasmed sphincter obstructing the flow of bile and/or pancreatic juice into the duodenum which presents clinically as recurrent episodes of biliary-type pain or pancreatitis.1 About 1–1.5% of post-cholecystectomy patients experience this as a complication months to years after their surgery, but it can also develop in patients with an intact biliary tract and gallbladder.2Characteristically, pain episodes are severe and episodic, ranging from only 3–4 pain incidents in a year to runs of pain occurrences over a number of weeks, sometimes followed by pain-free intervals lasting for several months.1 SOD is divided into types I–III which essentially categorise the certainty of sphincter pathophysiology. SOD type III is defined by clear recurrent biliary-type pain symptoms, type II with some additional abnormal biochemistry and/or radiological signs and type I is defined by all of the above plus specific endoscopic manometric findings of dilated common bile duct diameter measurements.2

For SOD severe pain episodes, opiates are the recommended analgesia, given parenterally for speed of delivery1; smooth muscle relaxants and calcium antagonists are ineffective for severe pain attacks.3 Amitriptyline is often used as analgesia if daily pain is present.4Endoscopic sphincterotomy for patients with manometrically-confirmed high basal sphincter tone provides the majority of treated patients with excellent long-term symptom relief.1However, both SO manometry and sphincterotomy are associated with a significant risk of pancreatitis, as well as perforation and bleeding.5–,7

The patient effectively managed daily pain with amitriptyline (30 mg nocte) and hyoscine-butylbromide (10 mg three times daily) and was almost completely pain-free during waking hours. Episodic severe nocturnal pain attacks caused extreme chest and upper abdominal pain. Night-time attacks were almost always followed by migrainous headaches with nausea, vomiting and marked exhaustion, and resulted in her spending at least 1 day in bed. The patient used oxycodone (20 mg), metoclopramide (10 mg) and orodispersible rizatriptan (20 mg) for symptomatic relief.

Between October 2009 and November 2011 the patient experienced 19 severe nocturnal pain attacks at irregular frequency. In December 2011 there was a nocturnal pain attack substantially more severe than previously experienced and an ambulance was called. An ECG excluded cardiac causes, the pain reduced with oxycodone and hospitalisation was avoided.

The patient felt emotionally traumatised by this experience and sought other management approaches for her condition. A GP acquaintance who practised Western medical acupuncture suggested acupuncture in addition to her current medication. She commenced acupuncture with a local traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) practitioner in January 2012 due to lack of Western medical practitioners locally. After only two treatments, however, she experienced two further night-time attacks 1 week apart and lost confidence in acupuncture. The GP acupuncturist offered to teach her self-administered acupuncture. By March 2012 the patient was suffering near-weekly nocturnal attacks and accepted the offer. The patient lives hundreds of miles away from the GP acupuncturist so could not visit for frequent treatment. Self-administered acupuncture would have to commence before establishing whether the treatment would be effective.

Based on a Korean paper8 showing SO relaxation in sedated patients by needling GB34 as well as neurosegmental considerations and ease of point location for self-needling, an initial plan was devised to teach self-needling of three different acupuncture points: LR3, GB34 and ST25.

During training on three consecutive days the GP taught the patient to safely insert 0.18×30 mm acupuncture needles with guide tubes into points LR3, GB34 and ST25 bilaterally and to stimulate them manually with fine twisting. Additional training was given on use of an EA machine to stimulate the needles electrically. To overcome hesitation when inserting needles, the GP advised the patient to deeply inhale and then exhale sharply through pursed lips while tapping the needle through the guide tube. The patient returned home with needles, a sharps box and adhesive tape (for fixing EA cables to the skin) and planned weekly sessions of acupuncture.

The GP recommended three possible easy-to-use EA machines as he believed electrical stimulation to be more efficacious and easier than manual. His recommendations were based on a combination of cost and ease of use.

After returning home the patient experienced SOD-type gastric pain of the type occasionally experienced in daytime. After manual manipulation of needles in points GB34 and LR3 for around 20 min the pain abated. She had not thought of needling during daytime break-through pain and this experience increased her confidence in needling.

Soon after, the patient experienced a night-time attack with moderate pain. She manually needled GB34 bilaterally instead of taking oxycodone and the pain abated after 25 min. She went straight back to sleep and woke feeling fine in the morning before going to work as normal.

Later in April 2012 the patient consulted a gastrointestinal specialist with whom she had previously discussed SO manometry and sphincterotomy. The consultant considered that her condition was worsening and that further intervention was appropriate, and prescribed glyceryl trinitrate aerosol spray as possibly both a therapeutic and a diagnostic tool to take during her next nocturnal pain attack. During the next night-time attack, in April 2012, the patient found the glyceryl trinitrate aerosol spray did not relieve the pain. Thirty minutes later she manually needled LR3 and GB34 bilaterally, which gave complete pain relief after about 20 min. She went back to sleep, woke feeling fine in the morning and went to work. Use of self-needling to immediately relieve pain attacks had not been anticipated.

The patient purchased an EA machine, model AS SUPER 4 Digital Schwa-Medico, chosen because of its high levels of flexibility of operating parameters, since the treatment was not yet proven and it might have been necessary to experiment.

With further guidance via email and video call, the patient began approximately weekly preventive EA treatments using paired LR3 and GB34 (bilaterally) and ST25. The EA machine was programmed to 10 Hz/15 Hz, 60 μs pulse width for 30 min. The underlying assumption was that, as these EA frequencies have been shown in experimental studies to increase visceral blood flow, they might be helpful for SOD too.9 ,10

The patient found self-needling of ST25 difficult and, as pain attacks had become less frequent and less severe using only LR3 and GB34, she ceased using this point.

Other minor problems encountered were occasional minor local bruising or minimal bleeding after needling, for which she was advised to apply local pressure for longer after removing the needles, which resolved these issues.

In September 2012 the patient experienced daytime pain during a working group. She rolled up her trousers discreetly, needled GB34 bilaterally, put her legs up under the table and continued to work as the pain subsided.

By May 2013 the patient had reduced her dose and then stopped taking hyoscine-butylbromide with no recurrence of daily pain. The last use of oxycodone was 25 March 2012 and she no longer required metoclopramide or rizotriptan.

The patient conducts acupuncture on her bed, ensuring that the session is warm and comfortable, usually with a book and a hot drink (see figure 1A,B).

View larger version: In a new window Download as PowerPoint SlideFigure 1

(A, B) The patient needling at LR3 and GB34 ready for electroacupuncture in a weekly preventive session conducted in her own bedroom.

 

Table 1 in the online appendix is the patient's list of pain attacks showing increased frequency of pain attacks during February to April 2012, followed by decreased frequency and severity of night-time pain episodes after commencement of regular preventive EA. Dates of every self-administered acupuncture session to June 2013 are shown in table 2 in the online appendix.

The possibility of overtreatment and reduction in efficacy of acupuncture was considered, but colleagues of the GP suggested there was no such risk. However, since the treatment sessions do carry a cost in terms of use of time, the patient reduced treatment frequency to every 2 weeks and sometimes longer if travel interfered.

Figure 2 shows the frequency of severe night-time pain attacks, mild night-time pain episodes (after starting acupuncture), doses of 30 mg dihydrocodeine, 10 mg oxycodone, treatments of self-administered preventive acupuncture and acupuncture for analgesia.

View larger version: In a new window Download as PowerPoint SlideFigure 2

Occurrences of night-time pain episodes (severe and mild), doses of 30 mg dihydrocodeine, 10 mg oxycodone, self-acupuncture, preventative and for analgesia during day-time or night-time pain.

 Discussion

A group of Korean gastroenterologists published an article in a peer-reviewed American gastroenterology journal, demonstrating that low-frequency EA at GB34 right side resulted in fast reversible inhibition of SO contractions as well as temporary reduction of blood cholecystokinin (CCK) levels in humans.8 GB34 is a TCM point traditionally used for hepatobiliary disorders.11 In the Korean study (n=17), GB34 appeared to be point-specific as there was no discernible effect on SO pressure or CCK levels in the control group with EA at a point 5 cm away from GB34.8 Researching the neuroanatomy of SO revealed that “the nerve supply to the extrahepatic bile duct is from extrinsic and intrinsic nerves. The extrinsic nerves are mainly from the hepatic plexus. The posterior hepatic plexus contains preganglionic parasympathetic fibers from branches of the vagus nerve and postganglionic sympathetic fibers that arise from the right coeliac plexus. The anterior hepatic plexus contains postganglionic fibers from the left coeliac and preganglionic fibers from the left vagus. The intrinsic nerve supply is mainly from neural connection from surrounding organs such as the duodenum, stomach and gallbladder. This complex neural supply is important in controlling sphincter motility.”12 Lee et al had not shown pain relief but direct effects on SO by needling GB34 on the right.8 Given that the SO has right and left coeliac plexus nerve input, bilateral GB34 needling was chosen for the patient in this case.

The segmental level of the autonomic sympathetic innervation of the small intestine (including the duodenum) is T9–T10 and, of the liver and gallbladder, T7–T9; the parasympathetic innervation is mediated by the vagus nerve.13 The segmental (dermatome, myotome and sclerotome) correlation of GB34 is L5 —that is, there is no direct segmental correspondence to either the small intestine or the liver/gallbladder autonomic innervation—whereas ST25 (lateral of the umbilicus) corresponds segmentally to T10, which one could postulate might be good for the sympathetic stimulation of the small intestine.

ST36 is a point close to GB34 which is a major point for achieving central effects, and segmentally this point corresponds to L4/L5. In order to stimulate on a segmental level with an effect on the hepatobiliary system, more cranial stomach meridian points like ST19 to ST21 might be good choices. ST36, LR2 and LR3 (between the first and second metatarsals) are all points traditionally used in TCM for liver complaints, with LR3 well-known as a major point for central effects and abdominal problems.14

There is a 330 year history of documented cases of self-acupuncture going back to Willem ten Rhijne's case in 1683,15 and self-acupuncture has been promoted—with the provision of clear guidelines—by senior members of the British Medical Acupuncture Society, notably Campbell and Hopwood,16 Filshie and Hester,17 Cummings18 and Dyer et al.19

Adequate training and follow-up patient coaching for self-administration of manual acupuncture and EA is essential to give the patient confidence to persist through minor setbacks. A good rapport with a trusted practitioner is essential so the patient can approach the practitioner if needing reassurance or further guidance. Patients’ motivation and ability to learn acupuncture and persist with a regular programme is important if full benefits of treatment are to be achieved.

An EA machine costs £100–400 and needles cost £2–8 for 100 needles. The economic cost of hospital treatment and sick leave due to severe biliary pain episodes is considerably higher than that for most patients with SOD. In addition, the emotional cost and negative effect on her career of unpredictable debilitating attacks far outweighed the financial cost of EA equipment and time investment for acupuncture treatments. The patient considered the near-weekly severe night-time pain attacks of February and March 2012 to be an unsustainable situation and would likely have taken steps to progress toward risky SO manometry and sphincterotomy as the only other solution had she not improved after starting regular self-administered EA.

Conclusions

This case report illustrates a highly-motivated patient who learned to self-administer manual acupuncture and EA safely and effectively to prevent and treat pain attacks caused by SOD type III. Treatment over a period of 16 months at the time of writing has resulted in a very substantial reduction in the frequency and severity of night-time pain attacks. An essential requirement was the patient's thorough specific training and follow-up support and encouragement from a suitably experienced practitioner of acupuncture.

Correctly self-administered manual acupuncture and EA is potentially an effective approach and could be considered as a management solution for patients with SOD type III before resorting to endoscopic SO manometry and sphincterotomy, which carry associated risks of pancreatitis and therefore a subsequent risk of death.

This case study provides evidence that could support a proposal for a multi-patient trial of self-administered acupuncture for management of SOD type III symptoms.

 

Box 1Extract from patient's acupuncture diary for 1 September 2012:

“Twenty weeks since last attack (don't count mild one on 14th August). It feels so different when the last attack is many weeks in the past. Saw Dr XX (gastrointestinal consultant) on 8th August and he was happy to hear of my progress with acupuncture. Our next appointment is 1 year away. I am really hoping to break my 6 month record of no attacks that went from Nov 2010 to May 2011. It feels really different knowing that I have another solution too, one that means the pain will go, I won't have a drug trip while trying to go back to sleep and I'll be fine in the morning. I don't have complete faith that it will always work that well, but I am very hopeful both of reducing the attacks and dealing with them when they occur.”

Box 2Extract from patient's acupuncture diary for 6 September 2012:

“Woke 02:00, felt quite annoyed, attack with pain, but not terrible. Did just GB34 again, stayed in bed, worked a treat. Back to sleep. Up in the morning and off to work. Victory! I feel like I have beaten this sucker! Now I do have huge expectation that I will just be able to shut down or switch off attacks with only a wee bit of GB34. Job's a good ‘un.”

 

Acknowledgments

The authors thank Dr Mike Cummings and Dr Yousuf Çakmak for providing very helpful suggestions with respect to EA frequencies and point selection. We thank Dr Mike Cummings, Dr Julie Geraghty and Dr Max Forrester for reviewing and offering very helpful comments and suggestions for drafts of this paper and thank Brian Windrim who took photographs included in this paper.

Footnotes

Contributors WAW contributed medical and acupuncture expertise, acupuncture literature review and is the physician in the case report. HCC contributed sphincter of Oddi dysfunction literature review, data and patient history and is the patient in the case report.

Competing interests None.

Patient consent Obtained.

Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; externally peer reviewed.

References↵ Toouli J. Sphincter of Oddi: function, dysfunction, and its management. J Gastroenterol Hepatol 2009;24(Suppl 3):S57–62. [Medline]Search Google Scholar↵ Corazziari E, Shaffer EA, Hogan WJ, et al. Functional disorders of the biliary tract and pancreas. Gut 1999;45:ii48–54. [Medline]Search Google Scholar↵ Behar J, Corazziari E, Guelrud M, et al. Functional gallbladder and sphincter of Oddi disorders. Gastroenterology 2006;130:1498–509. [CrossRef][Medline][Web of Science]Search Google Scholar↵ Kalaitzakis E, Ambrose T, Phillips-Hughes J, et al. Management of patients with biliary sphincter of Oddi disorder without sphincter of Oddi manometry. BMC Gastroenterol 2010;10:124. [Medline]Search Google Scholar↵ Fogel EL, Eversman D, Jamidir P, et al. Sphincter of Oddi dysfunction; pancreatobiliary sphincterotomy with pancreatic stent has a lower rate of pancreatitis than biliary sphincterotomy alone. Endoscopy 2002;34:280–5. [CrossRef][Medline][Web of Science]Search Google ScholarSteinberg WM. Should sphincter of Oddi be measured in patients with idiopathic recurrent acute pancreatitis and should sphincterotomy be performed if the pressure is high? Pancreas 2003;27:188–21. Search Google Scholar↵ Elta G. Temporary prophylactic stents: which patients need them [Editorial].Gastrointest Endosc 2008;67:262–4. [CrossRef][Medline][Web of Science]Search Google Scholar↵ Lee S, Kim M, Kim H, et al. Electroacupuncture may relax the sphincter of Oddi in humans. Gastrointest Endosc 2001;53:211–16. [CrossRef][Medline]Search Google Scholar↵ Çakmak YÖ, Akpinar IN, Ekinci G, et al. Point- and frequency-specific response of the testicular artery to abdominal electroacupuncture in humans. Fertil Steril2008;90:17328. [Medline][Web of Science]Search Google Scholar↵ Çakmak YÖ, Akpınar IN, Yoldemir T, et al. Decreasing bleeding due to uterine fibroid with electroacupuncture. Fertil Steril 2011;96:e1315. [Medline]Search Google Scholar↵ O'Connor J, Bensky D. Acupuncture a comprehensive text. Shanghai College of Traditional Medicine. Seattle, Washington: Eastland Press, 1996:276.Search Google Scholar↵ Clavien P-A, Baillie J. Diseases of the gallbladder and bile ducts: diagnosis and treatment. Malden, Massachusetts: John Wiley & Sons, 2008:11.Search Google Scholar↵ White A, Cummings M, Filshie J. An introduction to western medical acupuncture.London: Churchill Livingstone, 2008:213. Search Google Scholar↵ Mann F. Reinventing acupuncture: a new concept of ancient medicine. Oxford:Butterworth-Heinemann, 1992. Search Google Scholar↵ Carrubba RW, Bowers JZ. The Western world's first detailed treatise on acupuncture: Willem Ten Rhijne's Acupunctura. J Hist Med Allied Sci 1974;29:371–98.[Medline]Search Google Scholar↵ Campbell A, Hopwood V. Debate—patients should be encouraged to treat themselves. Acupunct Med 2004;22:141–5. [Abstract/FREE Full text]↵ Filshie J, Hester J. Guidelines for providing acupuncture treatment for cancer patients—a peer-reviewed sample policy document. Acupunct Med 2006;24:172–82.[Abstract/FREE Full text]↵ Cummings M. Self-acupuncture: a British Medical Acupuncture Society position. J Acupunct Ass Chart Physio 2008;1:47–50. Search Google Scholar↵ Dyer L, Venton K, Forrester M. Home electroacupuncture for persistent postsurgical pain: a patient's report. Acupunct Med. Published Online First: 22 Aug 2013.Search Google Scholar

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Stimulation of gastric slow waves with manual acupuncture at acupuncture points ST36 and PC6 – A randomized single blind controlled trial - Witt - 2012 - Neurogastroenterology & Motility - Wiley On...

Stimulation of gastric slow waves with manual acupuncture at acupuncture points ST36 and PC6 – A randomized single blind controlled trial - Witt - 2012 - Neurogastroenterology & Motility - Wiley On... | Acupuncture for gastrointestinal i.e. digestive system | Scoop.it

Keywords:acupuncture;autonomic nervous system;electrogastrography;gastric motility;heart rate variability

 

Abstract

Background  To investigate the effects of stimulated and non-stimulated manual acupuncture at ST36 and PC6 on gastric myoelectrical activity and autonomic function.

Methods  A total of 65 healthy volunteers were randomly assigned to a 1: 1: 2 ratio to receive either 15 min of verum acupuncture (VA) with stimulation followed by 15 min of VA without stimulation (nsVA), or 15 min of nsVA followed by 15 min of VA with stimulation (sVA), or 30 min of sham acupuncture (SA). Measures of autonomic function included electrogastrogram, electrocardiogram, impedance cardiography and assessment of blood pressure, breathing frequency, and electrodermal activity. Outcome parameters were compared between VA and SA, and between sVA and nsVA. The percentage of regular gastric slow waves (normogastria) was defined as the primary outcome.

Key Results  The percentage of normogastria was not significantly different between VA and SA. Differences in secondary outcomes such as power spectrum of gastric slow waves and heart rate variability parameters were pronounced in the comparison of sVA and nsVA. During sVA, the percentage of normogastria was lower (P = 0.005), the percentage of bradygastria was higher (P = 0.003) and power ratio was higher (P < 0.001), systolic blood pressure was lower (P = 0.039) and RMSSD was higher (P < 0.001) as compared with nsVA.

Conclusions & Inferences  Our study suggests that manual stimulation of acupuncture needles at ST36 and PC6 affects gastric myoelectrical as well as cardiac activities in healthy volunteers. The effect of stimulation in acupuncture deserves further investigation.

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Abramovich uses acupuncture to stablilse weight

Abramovich uses acupuncture to stablilse weight | Acupuncture for gastrointestinal i.e. digestive system | Scoop.it

By TOM BRYANT, Daily Mail

Last updated at 22:00 26 July 2006

 

As one of the world's richest men, Roman Abramovich might be expected to lead a more carefree existence than most.

But it seems that even an £11billion fortune does not insulate you from worrying about your weight.

Arriving for a business meeting in Moscow, the 39-year-old Russian owner of Chelsea Football Club was spotted with an inch-long silver needle protruding from his left ear.

The strange accessory suggests he is undergoing auricular acupuncture, a Chinese treatment where needles are inserted to alleviate a range of conditions, most notably drug addiction and stress.

However, in Mr Abramovich's case, health experts believe that the needle's position on his ear could be there to stabilise his weight.

"Looking carefully at the picture, it seems to me that it could be used for suppressing his appetite," said Pauline Ronson, of the Society of Auricular Acupuncturists.

"There's a much smaller chance that it could be for nasal problems or high blood pressure, but taking into account its position, I think it could be safe to say it is for controlling weight.

"It's quite strange because it's normally placed on the ears of much larger men, whose eating is more of a problem, and Mr Abramovich seems of normal size."

Mrs Ronson said that there were more than 200 acupuncture points on the ear, each related to different parts of the anatomy.

And she admitted that the type of needle that Mr Abramovich was using was highly unusual.

"If you look closely, you can see a little hook at the end, and it might be that the needle has magnetic properties and that he uses an instrument to attach to his ear to make it work," she said.

"But I must admit that in my 25 years of administering acupuncture, I haven't come across such a needle, which makes me think that he had it done abroad."

While he did suffer a weight problem as a young man in Russia, the billionaire is known to keep trim with state-of-the-art gyms at all his homes and on his fleet of yachts.

And at the business meeting, he was seen wearing a Polar M61 cardio-activity monitor on his wrist, which allows him to see how many calories he has used and how much fat he has burned.

Mr Abramovich, who has five children with his wife Irina, a former air stewardess, would not have worried about the acupuncture treatment making a lasting dent in his bank balance.

With a session only costing £40, it is one of the more affordable treatments increasingly favoured by public figures and celebrities.

These include Cherie Blair, a long-time convert to alternative therapy who has had acupuncture sessions with London-based holistic therapist Bharti Vyas for more than ten years.

And supermodel Kate Moss was recently spotted with plasters covering up needles in her ear, reportedly to help her fight cocaine addiction.

Princess Diana also had regular acupuncture sessions, often wearing up to four needles in her left ear. The tiny coiled pins were used to help her stay calm, help her depression and keep her eating disorders in check.

Other conditions which can supposedly benefit from sessions are food cravings, depression, hyperactivity, PMS, asthma and allergies, hepatitis and migraines.

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Acupuncture treatment for irritable bowel syndrome... [Digestion. 2001] - PubMed - NCBI

Acupuncture treatment for irritable bowel syndrome... [Digestion. 2001] - PubMed - NCBI | Acupuncture for gastrointestinal i.e. digestive system | Scoop.it
Digestion. 2001;64(2):100-3.Acupuncture treatment for irritable bowel syndrome. A double-blind controlled study.Fireman Z, Segal A, Kopelman Y, Sternberg A, Carasso R.Source

Department of Gastroenterology, Hillel Yaffe Medical Center, Hadera, Israel. fireman@hillel-yaffe.health.gov.il

AbstractBACKGROUND/AIM:

Irritable bowel syndrome is one of the most common gastrointestinal disorders in Western society, affecting around 15% of the population, especially young adults. The cause(s) of irritable bowel syndrome and effective treatment(s) have remained elusive. This study aimed at exploring the therapeutic value of acupuncture by comparing the responses of irritable bowel syndrome sufferers to true acupuncture versus sham acupuncture in a controlled double-blind study.

PubMed comprises more than 23 million citations for biomedical literature from MEDLINE, life science journals, and online books. Citations may include links to full-text content from PubMed Central and publisher web sites.

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"Shock treatment" reduces postoperative nausea and vomiting - acupuncture technique

"Shock treatment" reduces postoperative nausea and vomiting - acupuncture technique | Acupuncture for gastrointestinal i.e. digestive system | Scoop.it
Nausea and vomiting after anesthesia, known as PONV (postoperative nausea and vomiting) is still common, despite new anesthetic agents and anti-nausea medications tested in hundreds of clinical stu...
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Stimulation of the wrist acupuncture point P6 for preventing postoperative nausea and vomiting - The Cochrane Library - Lee - Wiley Online Library

Stimulation of the wrist acupuncture point P6 for preventing postoperative nausea and vomiting - The Cochrane Library - Lee - Wiley Online Library | Acupuncture for gastrointestinal i.e. digestive system | Scoop.it

Plain language summary

 

P6 acupoint stimulation prevents postoperative nausea and vomiting with few side effects

 

Postoperative nausea and vomiting (PONV) are two of the most common complications after anaesthesia and surgery. Drugs are only partially effective in preventing PONV and may cause adverse effects. Alternative methods, such as stimulating an acupuncture point on the wrist (P6 acupoint stimulation), have been studied in many trials.

 

The use of P6 acupoint stimulation can reduce the risk of nausea and vomiting after surgery, with minimal side effects. The risks of postoperative nausea and vomiting were similar after P6 acupoint stimulation and antiemetic drugs.

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Interventions for dysphagia and nutritional support in acute and subacute stroke - The Cochrane Library "there was some evidence that acupuncture and behavioural interventions may reduce dysphagia"

Interventions for dysphagia and nutritional support in acute and subacute stroke - The Cochrane Library "there was some evidence that acupuncture and behavioural interventions may reduce dysphagia" | Acupuncture for gastrointestinal i.e. digestive system | Scoop.it
Interventions for problems with swallowing and poor nutrition in patients who have had a recent stroke

Stroke is often complicated by problems with swallowing (dysphagia) and poor nutrition. Normal oral feeding in those with swallowing problems may lead to pneumonia and an increased risk of death. Therapies to improve swallowing are designed to accelerate recovery of swallowing function and reduce the risk of developing pneumonia. We reviewed 33 studies involving 6779 patients (the average age of patients across the studies was 71 years).

 

There was some evidence that acupuncture and behavioural interventions may reduce dysphagia but the roles of drug therapy, neuromuscular electrical stimulation, pharyngeal electrical stimulation, physical stimulation, transcranial direct current stimulation, and transcranial magnetic stimulation remain unclear.

 

Liquid food may be given directly into the stomach through feeding tubes, either via the gullet, using a nasogastric tube (NGT), or directly into the stomach via a percutaneous endoscopic gastrostomy (PEG) tube. Starting tube feeding (with either NGT or PEG) early after stroke may reduce death although the information available remains inconclusive. If longer-term feeding is required PEG feeding provides better nutrition and is more secure than a NG tube.

 

The available trial evidence does not support the routine use of protein and energy supplements in acute stroke patients who are able to take food by mouth; supplements may show benefit in those who have signs of malnutrition, for example through reducing pressure sores.

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IBS Alternative Treatments: Acupuncture, Herbs, and Supplements

IBS Alternative Treatments: Acupuncture, Herbs, and Supplements | Acupuncture for gastrointestinal i.e. digestive system | Scoop.it
WebMD provides an overview of alternative treatments used for irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

 

Alternative treatments such as acupuncture, dietary supplements, and herbs don't always get the official scientific nod, but some patients turn to them for help with irritable bowel syndrome (IBS).

Acupuncture for IBS

Acupuncture is a popular alternative therapy for IBS and other conditions. It's proven effective for treating chronic pain, according to researchers at the National Institutes of Health (NIH). However, the studies are mixed on whether the treatments really work for IBS.

Some studies show that acupuncture helps with abdominal pain and other IBS symptoms. Other studies show that it doesn't help.

Philip Schoenfeld, MD, MSEd, MSc, investigated various IBS treatments when he co-authored the treatment guidelines published by the American College of Gastroenterology. He says the hard data showing acupuncture's effectiveness isn't very good. Yet "that does not mean that acupuncture might not be helpful," he says. Many individuals say they feel better after acupuncture. Out of all alternative options, he suspects that acupuncture may help some people with IBS.

It is not entirely clear how this traditional Chinese treatment works. Some researchers believe the acupuncture needles stimulate electromagnetic signals in the body. These signals are thought to either encourage the release of pain-killing chemicals, or nudge the body's natural healing systems into action.

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Acupuncture for treatment of irritable bowel syndrome - The Cochrane Library - Manheimer - Wiley Online Library

Acupuncture for treatment of irritable bowel syndrome - The Cochrane Library - Manheimer - Wiley Online Library | Acupuncture for gastrointestinal i.e. digestive system | Scoop.it

AbstractBackground

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a common, costly, and difficult to treat disorder that impairs health-related quality of life and work productivity. Evidence-based treatment guidelines have been unable to provide guidance on the effects of acupuncture for IBS because the only previous systematic review included only small, heterogeneous and methodologically unsound trials.

Objectives

The primary objectives were to assess the efficacy and safety of acupuncture for treating IBS.

Search methods

MEDLINE, the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, EMBASE, the Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health, and the Chinese databases Sino-Med, CNKI, and VIP were searched through November 2011.

Selection criteria

Randomized controlled trials (RCTs) that compared acupuncture with sham acupuncture, other active treatments, or no (specific) treatment, and RCTs that evaluated acupuncture as an adjuvant to another treatment, in adults with IBS were included.

Data collection and analysis

Two authors independently assessed the risk of bias and extracted data. We extracted data for the outcomes overall IBS symptom severity and health-related quality of life. For dichotomous data (e.g. the IBS Adequate Relief Question), we calculated a pooled relative risk (RR) and 95% confidence interval (CI) for substantial improvement in symptom severity after treatment. For continuous data (e.g. the IBS Severity Scoring System), we calculated the standardized mean difference (SMD) and 95% CI in post-treatment scores between groups.

Main results

Seventeen RCTs (1806 participants) were included. Five RCTs compared acupuncture versus sham acupuncture. The risk of bias in these studies was low. We found no evidence of an improvement with acupuncture relative to sham (placebo) acupuncture for symptom severity (SMD -0.11, 95% CI -0.35 to 0.13; 4 RCTs; 281 patients) or quality of life (SMD = -0.03, 95% CI -0.27 to 0.22; 3 RCTs; 253 patients). Sensitivity analyses based on study quality did not change the results. A GRADE analysis indicated that the overall quality of the evidence for the primary outcomes in the sham controlled trials was moderate due to sparse data. The risk of bias in the four Chinese language comparative effectiveness trials that compared acupuncture with drug treatment was high due to lack of blinding. The risk of bias in the other studies that did not use a sham control was high due to lack of blinding or inadequate methods used for randomization and allocation concealment or both. Acupuncture was significantly more effective than pharmacological therapy and no specific treatment. Eighty-four per cent of patients in the acupuncture group had improvement in symptom severity compared to 63% of patients in the pharmacological treatment group (RR 1.28, 95% CI 1.12 to 1.45; 5 studies, 449 patients). A GRADE analysis indicated that the overall quality of the evidence for this outcome was low due to a high risk of bias (no blinding) and sparse data. Sixty-three per cent of patients in the acupuncture group had improvement in symptom severity compared to 34% of patients in the no specific therapy group (RR 2.11, 95% CI 1.18 to 3.79; 2 studies, 181 patients). There was no statistically significant difference between acupuncture and Bifidobacterium (RR 1.07, 95% CI 0.90 to 1.27; 2 studies; 181 patients) or between acupuncture and psychotherapy (RR 1.05, 95% CI 0.87 to 1.26; 1 study; 100 patients). Acupuncture as an adjuvant to another Chinese medicine treatment was significantly better than the other treatment alone. Ninety-three per cent of patients in the adjuvant acupuncture group improved compared to 79% of patients who received Chinese medicine alone (RR 1.17, 95% CI 1.02 to 1.33; 4 studies; 466 patients). There was one adverse event (i.e. acupuncture syncope) associated with acupuncture in the 9 trials that reported this outcome, although relatively small sample sizes limit the usefulness of these safety data.

Authors' conclusions

Sham-controlled RCTs have found no benefits of acupuncture relative to a credible sham acupuncture control for IBS symptom severity or IBS-related quality of life. In comparative effectiveness Chinese trials, patients reported greater benefits from acupuncture than from two antispasmodic drugs (pinaverium bromide and trimebutine maleate), both of which have been shown to provide a modest benefit for IBS. Future trials may help clarify whether or not these reportedly greater benefits of acupuncture relative to pharmacological therapies are due entirely to patients’ preferences for acupuncture or greater expectations of improvement on acupuncture relative to drug therapy.

 Jump to…Plain language summaryAcupuncture for irritable bowel syndrome

Irritable bowel syndrome (IBS) is a chronic gastrointestinal condition characterized by altered bowel habits and abdominal pain and discomfort. It is a common, costly, and difficult to treat disorder that also impairs health-related quality of life and work productivity. Some pharmacological (i.e. drug) therapies for treating IBS have modest benefits and a risk for side effects, and therefore, it is important to evaluate the effectiveness and safety of non-drug therapies, including acupuncture. One problem with trials in IBS is that placebo effects are often seen in IBS treatment. Placebo effects are improvements in symptoms that are due to patient beliefs in a particular treatment rather than the specific biological effects of the treatment.

This review included 17 randomized controlled trials (RCTs) including a total of 1806 participants. Five RCTs (411 participants) compared acupuncture to sham acupuncture for the treatment of IBS. Sham acupuncture is a procedure in which the patient believes he or she is receiving true acupuncture. However, in sham acupuncture the needles either do not penetrate the skin or are not placed at the correct places on the body, or both. Sham acupuncture is intended to be a placebo for true acupuncture. The sham-controlled studies were well designed and of high methodological quality. These studies tested the effects of acupuncture on IBS symptom severity or health-related quality of life. None of these RCTs found acupuncture to be better than sham acupuncture for either of these two outcomes, and pooling the results of these RCTs also did not show acupuncture to be better than sham acupuncture. Evidence from four Chinese language comparative effectiveness trials showed acupuncture to be superior to two antispasmodic drugs (pinaverium bromide and trimebutine maleate), both of which provide a modest benefit for the treatment of IBS, although neither is approved for treatment of IBS in the United States. It is unclear whether or not the greater benefits of acupuncture reported by patients in these unblinded studies are due entirely to patients’ greater expectations of improvement from acupuncture than drugs or preference for acupuncture over drug therapy. There was one side effect (i.e. fainting in one patient) associated with acupuncture in the nine trials that reported side effects, although relatively small sample sizes limit the usefulness of this safety data.

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Acupuncture Helps Pediatric Patients Manage Pain and Nausea | ucsf.edu

Acupuncture Helps Pediatric Patients Manage Pain and Nausea | ucsf.edu | Acupuncture for gastrointestinal i.e. digestive system | Scoop.it
By Leslie Lingaas on April 30, 2014

The pink plastic box thatCynthia Kim, MD, EdD, opens at the bedside of a young patient at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital San Francisco looks like it might contain art supplies. But inside is everything she needs to provide an ancient form of pain relief.

Kim is one of three physicians within the UCSF Department of Pediatrics trained to perform acupuncture on hospitalized patients, making UCSF one of a very few academic medical centers to offer this complementary treatment to both inpatients and outpatients.

Kim, a hospitalist specializing in pain management and palliative care, grew up in Korea where traditional Chinese medicine was the first-line treatment for family ailments. Her pediatrics training in the United States schooled her in western medicine, but Kim now offers young patients the best of both worlds.

Interested in Acupuncture?

For more information about this treatment for children, contact the Integrative Pediatric Pain and Palliative Care service at  (415) 353-1328.

Kim, along with pediatric hospitalist Karen Sun, MD, and pediatric rehabilitation specialist Mitul Kapadia, MD, is a licensed medical acupuncturist­­ – a physician trained to provide acupuncture to hospitalized patients.

Her expertise is provided through the Integrative Pediatric Pain and Palliative Care (IP3) service, which provides both traditional and complementary pain management and palliative care for children at UCSF Benioff Children’s Hospital San Francisco.

An Effective Complementary Therapy

In light of studies that have shown the benefit of this 2,000-year old treatment for conditions such as nausea, back pain, anxiety and headaches, insurance companies are increasingly covering acupuncture as a complementary treatment, said Kim.

About 3 million people in the U.S. currently use acupuncture as part of their health care, she said.

Cynthia Kim, MD, EdD, opens the pink box that contains the tools she uses to perform acupuncture on her young patients.Photo by David Law

The IP3 team provided more than 200 acupuncture consults in 2013 to hospitalized patients. Most of the patients Kim sees are undergoing cancer treatment and use acupuncture to help manage chronic nausea from chemotherapy or to relieve discomfort from other aspects of their treatment. 

Acupuncture has been shown to reduce nausea by up to 70 percent, according to Kim. The treatment, which very rarely has side effects, can also help with post-surgical pain.

Controlled studies of acupuncture in pediatric patients have shown its usefulness in managing nausea after surgical removal of tonsils and adenoids and following eye surgery to correct strabismus. It has also been shown to help reduce chronic headache pain in children. Just how acupuncture works is not well understood, but it may stimulate the release of neurotransmitters such as endorphins and serotonin or otherwise inhibit pain transmission.

Acupuncture is based on the theory that energy flows along meridians, or channels, in the body, and that blockages in this flow lead to illness.

Acupuncturists memorize thousands of pressure points along major and minor meridians that are believed to affect body functions, said Kim.  She often applies acupuncture to a nausea pressure point along the forearm, but points around the ear are also useful in managing the stress and anxiety that can accompany hospital treatment.  

Laser Acupuncture Offers Alternative to Needles

Traditionally, acupuncture involves inserting very thin needles into the body, but there are a number of variations on classic acupuncture that are also effective, including adding electrical stimulation to the acupuncture point, or simply applying pressure. 

Laser acupuncture is a particularly popular option for young children. It uses infrared light from a device that resembles a small flashlight to deliver an imperceptible dose of thermal energy to the pressure point.  Research has shown laser acupuncture to be as effective as needles, said Kim, which is a boon for young patients who may become anxious at the sight of yet another needle, even one that is painless.

“They’d much rather see me use my little red light,” said Kim with a smile.

Effective acupuncture is tailored to an individual’s personality traits, so Kim typically spends a half-hour with patients during treatments to get to know them. She clearly relishes the time she spends with each child.

“Acupuncture involves touching, and that is a part of the healing process that is not emphasized in western medicine,” she said.

After evaluating a patient to see if symptoms are likely to respond to acupuncture, Kim typically administers five treatments over the course of several weeks. She then teaches parents and children how to treat these same points on their own with acupressure. About half of the children who receive treatment during their hospitalizations also use acupuncture on an outpatient basis, often through the IP3 service’s weekly clinic.

Ongoing Research

Now that acupuncture is incorporated into pediatric care at UCSF, the team plans to add to the body of research on how it can best be used.

Kim is conducting a controlled trial using laser acupuncture on young patients who undergo renal biopsies each year at the children’s hospital. The biopsy involves inserting a large needle into the kidney, a procedure that can be painful and make patients anxious.

The study is comparing actual to sham treatment by means of pre- and post-treatment patient surveys. Preliminary data suggest a 50-percent decrease in the use of pain medications and anxiety, said Kim.

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New MRI Acupuncture Study Finds Stomach & Heart Point Specificity

New MRI Acupuncture Study Finds Stomach & Heart Point Specificity | Acupuncture for gastrointestinal i.e. digestive system | Scoop.it

ON 13 MAY 2013.

 

A new study confirms that acupuncture’s medical benefits are acupuncture point specific for its effective actions on the stomach, intestines and heart. Researchers discovered that needling acupuncture point CV12 increases HRV, heart rate variability, an important ability of the human heart to vary its rate in reaction to bodily demands. Needling CV12 did not affect electrogastrogram signals, a measure of electric signals in the stomach and intestines. The converse is true of needling acupuncture point UB32. Applying an acupuncture needle to this point affects electrogastrogram readings but does not affect HRV.

AcupunctureThis is the latest in a series of investigations proving that specific acupuncture points have specific effects. In a related MRI acupuncture study, investigators note that acupuncture “induce(s) different cerebral glucose metabolism changes in pain-related brain regions and reduce(s) intensity of pain” for patients with migraines. PET-CT neuroimaging (positron emission tomography - computed tomography) revealed that the choice of acupuncture points used determines exact changes in brain glycometabolism in specific regions of the brain.

Researchers at the University of California School of Medicine (Irvine, California) came up with similar results, “Recent evidence shows that stimulation of different points on the body causes distinct responses in hemodynamic, fMRI and central neural electrophysiological responses.” The investigators reviewed MRI results and noted that “stimulation of different sets of acupoints leads to disease-specific neuronal responses, even when acupoints are located within the same spinal segment.”

This type of research demonstrates that acupuncture points have specific biophysical effects on human health. For centuries, Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) scholars have documented specific clinical results for individual acupuncture points and groupings of acupuncture points. Researchers investigated this theoretical and clinical construct with MRI imaging technology to test for acupuncture point specificity. Their findings agree with the traditional view that the functional medicinal actions of individual acupuncture points have unique biophysical affects and render specific beneficial clinical outcomes for patients.

Reference:
Minagawa, Munenori, Yasuzo Kurono, Tatsuyo Ishigami, Atsushi Yamada, Toshinori Kakamu, Ryoichi Akai, and Junichiro Hayano. "Site-specific organ-selective effect of epifascial acupuncture on cardiac and gastric autonomic functions." Autonomic Neuroscience (2013).

A PET-CT study on specificity of acupoints through acupuncture treatment on migraine patients. Jie Yang1, Fang Zeng1, Yue Feng1,Li Fang1, Wei Qin2, Xuguang Liu1, Wenzhong Song3, Hongjun Xie3 , Ji Chen1, Fanrong Liang1.

Point specificity in acupuncture. Chinese Medicine 2012, 7:4 doi:10.1186/1749-8546-7-4. Emma M Choi, Fang Jiang, John C Longhurst. Susan Samueli Center for Integrative Medicine, Department of Medicine, School of Medicine, University of California, Irvine CA.

 

 

- See more at: http://www.healthcmi.com/Acupuncture-Continuing-Education-News/754-acupuncturecv12ub32#sthash.3DzPH8ng.vhv6rgfC.dpuf

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Can Acupuncture Prevent Gag Reflexes?- acupuncture and pharyngeal spasm | Acupuncture News and Views

Can Acupuncture Prevent Gag Reflexes?- acupuncture and pharyngeal spasm | Acupuncture News and Views | Acupuncture for gastrointestinal i.e. digestive system | Scoop.it
The gag reflex, also referred to as a pharyngeal spasm, is an automatic contraction of the back of the throat

 

 

Can Acupuncture Prevent Gag Reflexes?


The gag reflex, also referred to as a pharyngeal spasm, is an automatic contraction of the back of the throat that is usually evoked by touching either the back of the tongue, the roof of the mouth, or the back of the throat. A recent study conducted by researchers in Italy found that acupuncture may be of aid for those who wish to quell their gag reflex, such as during a visit with the dentist.

“Many patients avoid dental appointments because of severe gagging when they have work performed, such as taking impressions,” the authors wrote. “The aim of the present study therefore was to evaluate whether acupuncture can produce a reduction of the gag reflex.” How did the researchers go about this task?

The Dentist’s Chair
A total of 20 patients, between 19 and 80 years old, participated in the study. All had a history of gag reflex on taking dental impressions. For the experiment, the participants had an upper and lower dental impression done without acupuncture, and then a second upper and lower alginate impression done almost immediately after acupuncture needles were inserted — the needles were left in throughout the entire procedure. On a 10-point scale, where 10 represents the worst sensation of nausea, patients reported an average gag reflex score of seven after the first round of upper teeth impressions. After the second round with acupuncture, the patients reported, on average, gag reflex scores of just one. The same results occurred for gag reflex scores during lower teeth impressions done with and without acupuncture.

“The findings from our study suggest that acupuncture may be useful for preventing and treating gag reflex, and justifies further study,” wrote the authors. A separate though somewhat related study explored the possibility of using acupuncture, instead of codeine, as a treatment for children suffering from tonsillectomy pain.

Post-Surgical Use of Acupuncture
For many years, codeine has provided wonderful relief from the resulting pain from this particular operation. But earlier this year, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration banned the use of this potent drug because it may cause the death of children after surgery to remove tonsils and/or adenoids. The desire for an alternative treatment is strong as post-surgical pain often lasts up to 10 days in children.

Follow Us
To explore acupuncture as a potential post-operative treatment, a resarcher from Children’s Hospital and Health Center in San Diego enlisted the help of 56 participants ranging in age from two to 17 years old. Following their tonsillectomy, a little more than half (31) of the participants received treatment with acupuncture for their pain. On average, the benefit these patients felt after receiving the needles was just over 61 hours in duration; yet about 30 percent of patients reported less than three hours of benefit. Although the study may be too limited in size to suggest anything but preliminary findings, the author concluded that acupuncture may decrease perceived pain in children and adolescents after tonsillectomy and merits further investigation.

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Acupuncture for treatment of irritable bowel syndrome - The Cochrane Library - Manheimer - Wiley Online Library

Acupuncture for treatment of irritable bowel syndrome - The Cochrane Library - Manheimer - Wiley Online Library | Acupuncture for gastrointestinal i.e. digestive system | Scoop.it

Authors' conclusions 

 

Implications for practice

People with IBS have few treatment options available. Pharmacological therapies provide modest benefits (Ford 2009a), can have high costs, and some of the newer drugs have been withdrawn from the market because of adverse events (Thompson 2001; Pasricha 2007). Safe, non-pharmacological therapies that may allow patients to feel more empowered and more in control of their symptoms should be evaluated for effectiveness. However, evaluating complex non-pharmacological therapies for IBS (e.g. mindfulness meditation (Gaylord 2011) or hypnotherapy (Lindfors 2012)) poses challenges, particularly in regards to selecting a placebo control or a credible alternative treatment control.

While acupuncture can theoretically be compared with a sham acupuncture “placebo” control, a fundamental challenge has been developing a sham acupuncture control that is sufficiently believable to patients so as to be indistinguishable from true acupuncture, and yet at the same time not so similar to true acupuncture that the sham has a therapeutic effect of its own and is therefore not an inert placebo. The sham acupuncture controls used in four of the five sham-controlled trials in this review appeared to be believable as authentic treatments (Forbes 2005; Schneider 2006; Lembo 2009; Anastasi 2009), but two of the five sham-controlled trials used sham controls that might have had weak physiological activity (Forbes 2005; Anastasi 2009), and therefore these shams may not have been completely inert placebos. While none of the sham-controlled trials showed a benefit of acupuncture relative to sham acupuncture, it is still not clear whether these findings are because acupuncture has no true biological effect above and beyond a placebo; or whether instead acupuncture has small biological effects, but the small sample sizes and heterogeneity of participants and interventions in these trials precluded detecting a statistically significant pooled benefit of acupuncture over sham; or whether any biological effects of true acupuncture cannot be detected because they are overridden and obscured by the large placebo effects of the sham control (Kaptchuk 2006; Wechsler 2011). Evidence from four Chinese language comparative effectiveness trials (Shi 2010; Zeng 2010; Chen 2011; Sun 2011) showed acupuncture to be superior to two antispasmodic drugs (pinaverium bromide and trimebutine maleate), both of which have consistently been shown to provide a modest benefit in high quality trials (Jailwala 2000; Ruepert 2011), although neither is approved for treatment of IBS in the United States (Jailwala 2000). Patient preferences and expectations may partly explain the positive findings of these trials comparing acupuncture to drug treatment. That is, if the trial participants had pretreatment preferences for acupuncture over drugs, these preferences may have influenced the participants’ later assessments of their subjective states, as reported on the patient-reported outcome measures used (Kalauokalani 2001; Linde 2007; Manheimer 2007; O'Connell 2009).

In addition to efficacy, safety and costs are other considerations. Safety is best determined with large prospective surveys of practitioners and three such surveys (MacPherson 2001; White 2001; Melchart 2004) show that serious adverse events after acupuncture are rare. There was one adverse event associated with acupuncture in the nine trials that reported this outcome (Forbes 2005; Reynolds 2008;Anastasi 2009; Chen 2009; Lembo 2009; An 2010; Liu 2010; Shi 2010; Sun 2011), although relatively small sample sizes limit the usefulness of these safety data. Finally, patients would also need to consider costs because acupuncture treatment often needs to be paid for out of pocket.

 

Implications for research

Considering that our meta-analysis found no differences between acupuncture and sham, and also considering that there are limited resources available to conduct trials of acupuncture, a non-proprietary therapy, additional sham-controlled trials of acupuncture among IBS patients should not be a high priority in acupuncture research, at least until the large, ongoing sham-controlled trial, which is expected to complete data collection in March 2013, is published (Anastasi). This trial (n = 171) (Anastasi) compares a sham control with two different acupuncture test treatment groups, one test group using a fixed formula and the other test group using an individualized treatment approach, for patients with diarrhea-predominant IBS (See Characteristics of ongoing studies). If this trial shows no benefit of acupuncture relative to the sham, then the need for additional sham-controlled trials would seem questionable. However, if this ongoing sham-controlled trial shows a benefit, then it would certainly be warranted to conduct future sham-controlled trials building upon the results of this trial (e.g. restriction to diarrhea predominant IBS patients; using the same acupoints as used in this trial). Such future sham-controlled trials should use non-penetrating, but demonstrably credible, shams to control for placebo effects, and ideally these sham needles should be placed far away from the true acupuncture points.

Because of the difficulties of controlling for placebo effects in acupuncture for IBS trials, which typically evaluate strictly subjective, patient-reported outcomes (e.g. symptom severity, quality of life), another approach forward for research is the evaluation of objective or semi-objective outcomes in IBS patients, using pragmatic and cost-effectiveness trials. Indeed, a recently completed trial (n = 220) (Principal Investigator: MacPherson) compared the effectiveness and cost-effectiveness of acupuncture plus usual general practitioner (GP) care versus usual GP care alone, on the semi-objective outcomes of medication use, health service use, and days lost from work (MacPherson 2010). Although this trial does not include a placebo control, because the outcome measures being assessed in this trial are semi-objective, its results will be less influenced by expectation effects (Wood 2008; Hrobjartsson 2010; Manheimer 2011), than trials that assess only strictly subjective outcomes (i.e., patient reports of symptom improvement). Indeed, the Rome criteria for design of IBS treatment trials note that placebo effects “are especially a problem where end points are subjective” (Irvine 2006). If this recently completed cost-effectiveness trial shows that acupuncture reduces healthcare utilization, then whether the resulting cost-savings are due to a specific effect of acupuncture needling or non-specific effects (e.g. greater autonomy and empowerment of patients, positive patient-practitioner relationship) seems of secondary importance. However, it must be borne in mind that the patient population who elected to participate in this acupuncture trial may have stronger a priori beliefs about the benefits of acupuncture, than does the average population of IBS patients, and therefore, the non-specific effects experienced by the patients in this unblinded trial may not be generalizable to the results that would be obtained among an average population of IBS patients. However, the results of this trial may be generalizable to the subset of IBS patients in general practice who would elect to receive acupuncture because such patients may also have a prioriexpectations for acupuncture to be beneficial. To produce results generalizable to the average population of IBS patients, investigators of future pragmatic trials might minimize the recruitment of participants with an a priori preference for acupuncture by not specifying, in the recruitment of patients, that acupuncture is one of the treatment options being investigated.

Future comparative effectiveness trials would also be helpful to validate and extend the preliminary evidence in this review, which suggests that acupuncture is associated with greater improvements in subjective patient self-assessments than pharmacological therapies. As previously mentioned, a limitation of the acupuncture versus pharmacological therapy trials in this review is that they did not use a design that controlled for the effects of patients’ expectations for improvement, patient preferences, and non-specific therapeutic factors. Indeed, in the Chinese trials included in this review, the patients may well have had pre-treatment preferences for acupuncture, considering that these trials were conducted at hospitals of traditional Chinese medicine. Because acupuncture may elicit a greater expectation effect than pharmacological therapies or other active treatments (Kaptchuk 2006; Manheimer 2007; O'Connell 2009), particularly among participants who have a preference for acupuncture, investigators conducting future trials that compare acupuncture with other active therapies should consider asking participants about their preferences and expectations (before and after the intervention), and studying the potential effects of pre-treatment preferences on study outcomes. Such trials should also include a credibility questionnaire to establish that the treatments being compared are perceived by the patients as equally credible treatments for IBS symptoms (Gaylord 2011). Future comparative effectiveness trials in the West should also consider using a daily frequency of acupuncture, as was used in the Chinese trials in this review. However, even with additional well-designed trials, the truth about the effects of acupuncture for IBS will likely always be difficult to assess because the complexities and potential biases inherent to both the comparative effectiveness and sham acupuncture control designs makes it difficult to evaluate the subjective, patient-reported outcomes typically used in IBS trials.

 

 

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Ear acupuncture is the latest celebrity fad but does it work?

Ear acupuncture is the latest celebrity fad but does it work? | Acupuncture for gastrointestinal i.e. digestive system | Scoop.it
The celebrity set (including Cherie) swear by it to beat everything from stress to weight gain. So what is the truth about ear acupuncture? We tried it out

 

Forget cupping or crystal healing, auricular acupuncture is the most fashionable therapy in town and any celebrity worth their salt is wearing the tell-tale ear pin showing they're having treatment.

Kate Moss is said to be using it to combat cocaine addiction, Cherie Blair turns to it to relieve stress and most recently Chelsea FC boss Roman Abramovich was pictured with a needle in his ear, reportedly to help him lose weight. But does it really work?

Nick Dalton-Brewer practices auricular and general acupuncture at London's renowned Hale Clinic, and is convinced that it works.

"It may be the latest celebrity fad," he says, "but auricular acupuncture has, in fact, been used for thousands of years in traditional Chinese medicine, and is hugely helpful in treating all manner of problems, from addictions to insomnia, joint pain and fertility.

There are as many as 200 acupuncture points on the outer ear, each point named generally after areas of our anatomy - liver, heart, mouth and so on.

"The outer ear acts like a switchboard to the brain and each point triggers electrical impulses, from the ear, via the brain, to the area of the body being treated.

"After a lengthy consultation to build up a comprehensive picture of their general health, lifestyle and associated problems, patients are treated with needles - up to ten per ear - which are left in for between ten and 45 minutes.

"They can then be left with 'ear seeds' (as seen in pictures of Kate Moss and Cherie Blair), to stimulate the acupressure points and allow them to enjoy the effects of acupuncture after they leave the clinic.

"The seeds can be anything hard, from mustard seeds to gold-plated press studs or coiled pins, held against the ear with surgical tape.

"In more severe cases, needles can be left in place - as with Abramovich - but this is invasive and there can be problems with infection if they're not kept clean. The patient can rub these studs or seeds when they feel a re-emergence of their symptoms."

Many conventional medical professionals may be nonplussed by this type of acupuncture, dismissing it as merely mind over matter. But what happened when we challenged three celebrities to try it out?

Carol McGiffin, 46, co-presents Loose Women on ITV, and a Sunday morning radio show on LBC. She is single and lives in London.

I'm A huge sceptic where complementary medicine is concerned. People are always running off to have wacky therapies because they need to stop smoking or give up sugar, but I've always been a great believer in the fact that if you really want to do something, you'll do it.

I'm not a great advocate of using something as a crutch to help you - unless it's a glass of wine!

Having said that, sometimes you really need to make a leap of faith. So despite my better judgment, I decided to give auricular acupuncture a shot to see if it could do anything about the dreadful headaches I've been experiencing for the past few years.

I know they are associated with drinking, because they tend to turn up on the Monday after a heavy weekend of socialising, but unlike the usual hangover headache, which might last the morning, these can last until Thursday, which is very debilitating.

I don't consider myself a really heavy drinker - I don't drink at all during the week - but I do indulge in regular weekend drinking; Friday night in a pub and then boozy dinners on Saturday nights and a pub lunch on Sunday. I'd probably be all right if I carried on drinking all week, but as it is I suffer a mini cold-turkey session every week.

I wasn't particularly anxious to start the treatment, however, because the last time I had a pin stuck in me was in needlework class at school. The first thing the acupuncturist asked was: "What can I do for you?" To which I replied rather flippantly: "I don't know, what can you do for me?"

But then I figured if we were going to get anywhere, I should probably drop the attitude and at least give him a chance, so I told him about the headaches. I said I'd quite like to feel less groggy in the mornings and he said he could work with that, and explained the headaches were a result of me overworking my liver.

My immediate thought was that this would be obvious to anyone with the most rudimentary grasp of the workings of the human body, but I have to say I was impressed by his thoroughness when taking my patient history.

I wish regular doctors would spend half the time he spent finding out about my lifestyle. He then stuck three giant pins in my right ear, including in the 'liver point' - which is supposed to help repair liver damage - and something called the 'sympathetic point', which he said promotes the body's release of endorphins to help with pain relief.

When he'd finished, he taped three small metal balls into my outer ears. As I left the clinic, I suddenly realised I no longer had the headache I'd gone in with. I don't know if this was psychosomatic, but who cares? What a relief.

That night, a friend came round for dinner. I had my hair tied up after a visit to the gym and she spent half the night staring at me with a repulsed expression before asking when I'd last had a wash.

It turned out the balls had fallen out - probably in the sauna - and the heat had melted the tape glue, so I was left with clumps of yellowish matter which apparently looked just like earwax. Not a good look - even on Kate Moss.

All in all, it was a positive experience. My headache didn't return for the rest of the week, although I'll have to continue having treatment if I want to see longterm benefits. At the very least it made me realise I do need to address my drinking if I'm having such a dramatic effect on my liver.

Ross Burden, 37, is resident chef on BBC2 series Ready Steady Cook. He is single and lives in London.

I used to be a model, so looking good was a job requirement, but since my career change, keeping in shape has become increasingly hard work. When you're in the kitchen all day, the last thing you feel like doing is cooking, so you end up eating out and you start having to take more care of yourself.

Look at Gordon Ramsay - he runs marathons to prevent the paunch. I, on the other hand, have been rather slack at getting to the gym of late.

As the saying goes: 'No pecs, no sex' - so when I saw the pictures of Roman Abramovich and read that he was using the treatment to try to shift the pounds, I thought I'd give it a go.

I have a background in science - I did a degree in zoology - so although I've always been really sceptical about many therapies like homeopathy, which I think is a load of bunkum, I can see the logic in acupuncture as it taps into the 'electricity' running round the human body. I had it done a few years ago to alleviate my eczema and it really helped.

I tripped off to the clinic, feeling vaguely excited about the boundless energy and the motivation to go to the gym I was going to find.

I was a little perturbed, therefore, when the acupuncturist said he couldn't actually make me want to get on the treadmill.

He did say, however, that auricular acupuncture can help suppress appetite, although this is usually used to treat the severely obese. So I lay down and let him do his worst.

He loomed towards me with several huge pins - each of which, from where I was lying, seemed about the size of a javelin - and proceeded to stick them in and around my ear. He said there was a point called 'the mouth' under the crease at the top of my ear that would do the trick.

It was bizarre, because as they went in I could almost feel them hitting the spot and felt twinges in my stomach. It was strangely relaxing and I felt myself drifting off and dreaming about an impending trip where I'll get to taste the wines of new producers, with some delicious cheese and bread to accompany it. No, no - this wasn't good at all.

Before I knew it, the session was over and Nick explained he was going to insert some studs into my ear. This was the part I'd been most anxious about, because in the photos of Abramovich his ear looked red and sore.

But Nick explained that these pressed pins were like ear studs without the piercing part. They were held in place with tape.

When leaving the clinic I felt self-conscious and wondered if anyone would notice the pins, but I was also feeling a bit peckish, so gave one a rub - obviously I was too vigorous as it fell out and rolled into the gutter. No matter, I still had a couple left.

Disappointingly, however, these fell out in the shower the next day - I'm not sure how Kate et al manage, maybe they just wash in the sink.

I have to say I haven't really noticed any change in my appetite and I definitely haven't woken up aching to go to the gym. However, I did enjoy the session and would definitely book a course for more serious ailments because I have no doubt it can work.

If it's good for stress I might try it when Jean-Christophe Novelli, Aldo Zilli, Paul Rankin and I reform to sing as The Chefs from Celebrity X-Factor on Children In Need later in the year.

It's such a nerve-racking experience; I'll take any help I can get.

AMANDA LAMB, 33, presents A Place In The Sun on Channel 4. She is single and lives in Middlesex.

My mum is trained in the reiki technique - a Japanese hands-on healing process - so I grew up with alternative therapy and don't find it in the least strange or bizarre to see photos of Kate Moss or Cherie Blair with acupuncture pins in their ears.

I've previously tried reflexology - a complementary therapy which works on your feet - and acupuncture helped me give up smoking, but I wasn't sure whether it could help for something as difficult to pin-point and all-encompassing as stress.

Still, I was desperate to give it a go, as the past six months have been one of the most difficult periods of my life.

I've moved house, which is always a nightmare because it involves so much packing and sorting, and when I finally got into my new home - the point at which most people would breathe a huge sigh of relief and sit down with a cup of tea - I had to leave everything in chaos and fly off abroad to film the latest series of A Place in the Sun.

Several months down the line, most of my things are still in boxes because I've been away so much.

So, when Femail offered me the chance to try this treatment, I jumped at the opportunity.

I arrived late for my appointment at the clinic due to a delayed train and as usual my mobile phone was ringing off the hook with work-related calls, so I was even more flustered than normal.

But from the start Nick put me at ease.

After talking to me about my symptoms, he asked to see my tongue and said he could tell that my stomach and spleen were shot to bits, because my tongue was swollen and quivering.

This was troubling news, but Nick explained it was easily rectifiable - these symptoms simply meant my internal system was overworked. I'd told him I used to smoke and he suggested the cigarettes had been my way of relieving stress.

The problem is that once I stopped, I began to get really stressed, and it made my stomach ache.

He also felt my pulse and said he could tell I have a sluggish digestive system - perhaps not surprising given that I haven't had a home-cooked meal in months - because the quality of my pulse wasn't good. Apparently it felt 'empty and slippery' rather than strong and solid. I know it sounds rather weird, but I suppose he knows what he's talking about.

I lay down and he inserted five or six needles in my right ear. I must admit I was dreading it, particularly as I had my ear pierced at the top when I was younger and it was hideously painful.

So I was amazed when it hardly hurt at all. All I could feel was a slight sting as the needles went in. Obviously, I couldn't see what he was doing, but he explained that he was targeting something called the 'shenmen' or heart point of my ear, which supposedly calms the mind.

The needles were left in for 15 minutes and Nick talked me through what he was doing and approached a couple of times to twiddle them.

Then he took them out and said, to feel long-term benefit, I'd have to come back several times over the next few months.

When I left, I was still feeling stressed, as I had to get across town in rush hour and then pack for a trip, so I wondered if the entire thing had been a waste of time, particularly as I couldn't have the ear seeds left in because they'd show on screen.

However, after I got to Gatwick airport to fly off for filming the day after the recent terrorist scare to find the whole place in chaos and my flight horrendously delayed, I suddenly realised how calm I felt.

Usually I would have been extremely stressed - bouncing around, looking at my watch and asking hundreds of questions about when we might expect to fly.

But instead I just thought: 'I'll get there eventually.' That was a complete turnaround for me, and that feeling has stayed with me since.

I've also noticed that my stomach, which previously felt sore and bloated, has settled. That must be the physical side of the stress relief.

I'm a total convert and I'll definitely be booking a course when I get back.

An hour with Nick Dalton-Brewer costs from £50. For an appointment, call the Hale Clinic on 0845 009 4171.

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Doctor's review: "For what conditions has acupuncture treatment been found helpful?" - MedicineNet

Doctor's review: "For what conditions has acupuncture treatment been found helpful?" - MedicineNet | Acupuncture for gastrointestinal i.e. digestive system | Scoop.it

For what conditions has acupuncture treatment been found helpful?

The National Institutes of Health (NIH) Consensus Development Program was established in 1977 and is designed to assess health technology. The program organizes major conferences that produce consensus statements and technology assessment statements on controversial issues in medicine important to health care providers, patients, and the general public. The following statement is from the NIH Consensus Development Statement on Acupuncture on November 3-5, 1997.

 

Acupuncture as a therapeutic intervention is widely practiced in the United States. There have been many studies of its potential usefulness. However, many of these studies provide equivocal results because of design, sample size, and other factors. The issue is further complicated by inherent difficulties in the use of appropriate controls, such as placebo and sham acupuncture groups.

 

However, promising results have emerged, for example, efficacy of acupuncture in adult post-operative and chemotherapy nausea and vomiting and in post-operative dental pain. There are other situations such as addiction, stroke rehabilitation, headache, menstrual cramps, tennis elbow, fibromyalgia, myofascial pain, osteoarthritis, low back pain, carpal tunnel syndrome, and asthma where acupuncture may be useful as an adjunct treatment or an acceptable alternative or be included in a comprehensive management program.

 

Findings from basic research have begun to elucidate the mechanisms of action of acupuncture, including the release of opioids and other peptides in the central nervous system and the periphery and changes in neuroendocrine function. Although much needs to be accomplished, the emergence of plausible mechanisms for the therapeutic effects of acupuncture is encouraging.

 

The introduction of acupuncture into the choice of treatment modalities that are readily available to the public is in its early stages. Issues of training, licensure, and reimbursement remain to be clarified. There is sufficient evidence, however, of acupuncture's value to expand its use into conventional medicine and to encourage further studies of its physiology and clinical value.This statement is representative of the opinions of current standard medical practice.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 2/10/2014


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Clinical study on acupuncture combined with medication in restoration of gastrointestinal functions for postoperative patients with gastric cancer [Zhongguo Zhen Jiu. 2009] - PubMed - NCBI

Clinical study on acupuncture combined with medication in restoration of gastrointestinal functions for postoperative patients with gastric cancer [Zhongguo Zhen Jiu. 2009] - PubMed - NCBI | Acupuncture for gastrointestinal i.e. digestive system | Scoop.it

Zhongguo Zhen Jiu. 2009 Jun;29(6):459-62.[Clinical study on acupuncture combined with medication in restoration of gastrointestinal functions for postoperative patients with gastric cancer].[Article in Chinese]Yin SH, Du YQ, Liu B.Source

Traditional Chinese Medicine College, Xinjiang Medical University, Urumqi 830054, China.

AbstractOBJECTIVE:

To observe clinical therapeutic effects of acupuncture combined with medication in restoration of gastrointestinal functions for postoperative patients with gastric cancer.

METHODS:

Ninety patients undergoing radical surgeries for gastric cancer were randomly, according to the sequence of their operations, divided into three groups: a control group treated conventionally after their surgeries (group CONT, 30 cases), a Chinese medicine group treated by Simo Decoction administered by way of a nutrient canal in addition to the conventional treatment (group CM, 30 cases), and an acupuncture plus Chinese medicine group treated by warming needling in addition to those given in the Chinese medicine group (group ACUP+CM, 30 cases). Therapeutic effects were estimated 10 days after their operations.

RESULTS:

The time for restoration of gastrointestinal functions was obviously shortened, and the problems of poor appetite and difficulty in defecation were more markedly improved in group ACUP+CM than those in both group CONT and group CM (P < 0.01, P < 0.05). Ten days after operations, the number of patients with normal lymphocytes and normal percentage rate of lymphocytes to neutrophile granulocytes was obviously more in group ACUP+CM than those in both group CONT and group CM (P < 0.01, P < 0.05).

CONCLUSION:

Acupuncture combined with Chinese medicine is favorable in accelerating early air exhaustion and defecation, improving clinical symptoms, as well as in bi-directional regulating peripheral white blood cells

PubMed comprises more than 23 million citations for biomedical literature from MEDLINE, life science journals, and online books. Citations may include links to full-text content from PubMed Central and publisher web sites.

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Monitoring of neuromuscular blockade at the P6 acupuncture point reduces the incidence of postoperative nausea and vomiting. [Anesthesiology. 2007] - PubMed - NCBI

Monitoring of neuromuscular blockade at the P6 acupuncture point reduces the incidence of postoperative nausea and vomiting. [Anesthesiology. 2007] - PubMed - NCBI | Acupuncture for gastrointestinal i.e. digestive system | Scoop.it

Anesthesiology. 2007 Dec;107(6):903-8.Monitoring of neuromuscular blockade at the P6 acupuncture point reduces the incidence of postoperative nausea and vomiting.Arnberger M, Stadelmann K, Alischer P, Ponert R, Melber A, Greif R.Source

Department of Anesthesiology, Inselspital, University Hospital Bern, Switzerland.

AbstractBACKGROUND:

Electrical stimulation of the P6 acupuncture point reduces the incidence of postoperative nausea and vomiting (PONV). Neuromuscular blockade during general anesthesia can be monitored with electrical peripheral nerve stimulation at the wrist. The authors tested the effect of neuromuscular monitoring over the P6 acupuncture point on the reduction of PONV.

METHODS:

In this prospective, double-blinded, randomized control trial, the authors investigated, with institutional review board approval and informed consent, 220 women undergoing elective laparoscopic surgery anesthetized with fentanyl, sevoflurane, and rocuronium. During anesthesia, neuromuscular blockade was monitored by a conventional nerve stimulator at a frequency of 1 Hz over the ulnar nerve (n = 110, control group) or over the median nerve (n = 110, P6 group) stimulating at the P6 acupuncture point at the same time. The authors evaluated the incidence of nausea and vomiting during the first 24 h.

RESULTS:

No differences in demographic and morphometric data were found between both groups. The 24-h incidence of PONV was 45% in the P6 acupuncture group versus 61% in the control group (P = 0.022). Nausea decreased from 56% in the control group to 40% in the P6 group (P = 0.022), but emesis decreased only from 28% to 23% (P = 0.439). Nausea decreased substantially during the first 6 h of the observation period (P = 0.009). Fewer subjects in the acupuncture group required ondansetron as rescue therapy (27% vs. 39%; P = 0.086).

CONCLUSION:

Intraoperative P6 acupuncture point stimulation with a conventional nerve stimulator during surgery significantly reduced the incidence of PONV over 24 h. The efficacy of P6 stimulation is similar to that of commonly used antiemetic drugs in the prevention of PONV.

PubMed comprises more than 23 million citations for biomedical literature from MEDLINE, life science journals, and online books. Citations may include links to full-text content from PubMed Central and publisher web sites.

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Zhongguo Zhen Jiu. 2011 Jul;31(7):605-6 "Fifty cases of irritable bowel syndrome of diarrhea type treated with scalp acupuncture". PubMed - NCBI

Zhongguo Zhen Jiu. 2011 Jul;31(7):605-6 "Fifty cases of irritable bowel syndrome of diarrhea type treated with scalp acupuncture". PubMed - NCBI | Acupuncture for gastrointestinal i.e. digestive system | Scoop.it
Zhongguo Zhen Jiu. 2011 Jul;31(7):605-6."Fifty cases of irritable bowel syndrome of diarrhea type treated with scalp acupuncture".

PubMed comprises more than 23 million citations for biomedical literature from MEDLINE, life science journals, and online books. Citations may include links to full-text content from PubMed Central and publisher web sites.

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Morning sickness - how it can affect you

Morning sickness - how it can affect you | Acupuncture for gastrointestinal i.e. digestive system | Scoop.it
An early pregnancy sign, feeling sick is a common symptom of pregnancy - but how long will it last and what can you do?
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Acupuncture & Herbs Heal Colitis - New Findings

Acupuncture & Herbs Heal Colitis - New Findings | Acupuncture for gastrointestinal i.e. digestive system | Scoop.it

Acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicine heal chronic ulcerative colitis according to new research.

 

19 AUGUST 2013


New research confirms that acupuncture and herbal medicine relieve chronic ulcerative colitis. 


Herbal MedicineThis disorder is an inflammatory disease of the intestines that most commonly affects the innermost lining of the large intestine and rectum. It is a contiguous expanses of inflamed tissue that may spread deeply into affected regions. Biomedical treatments include anti-inflammatory drugs, immunosuppression and surgical removal of parts of the intestines. In Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM), a combination of acupuncture and herbs are used to treat this disorder.


TCM case histories for the successful treatment of chronic ulcerative colitis date back over 1,000 years. This new research confirms what has been included in standard Chinese Medicine texts for millennia. The approach taken in this recent study was to combine an herbal enema with standard acupuncture therapy. The herbal enema was comprised of a Bai Tou Weng and Ku Shen decoction. A control group was given only sulfasalazine, an antibiotic used in the treatment of ulcerative colitis and Crohn’s disease.


The researchers discovered two major findings. First, the acupuncture combined with herbal medicine group had significantly better patient outcomes than the drug group. Second, the acupuncture combined with herbal medicine group seldom had any side effects whereas the drug group experienced adverse effects from the antibiotic treatment. All results were taken from a sample size of 62 patients with chronic ulcerative colitis that were randomly divided into the acupuncture-herb group and the sulfasalazine antibiotic group.


This study was recently published in the Clinical Journal of Chinese Medicine.


- See more at: http://www.healthcmi.com/acupuncturist-news-online/811-colitis62#sthash.up9q7BF9.dpuf

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