Acupuncture, Other Therapies Should
be Presented as Treatment Options to Hypertensives
Non-drug therapies are vital in preventing and treating hypertension. The
successive reports of the Joint National Committee on Prevention, Detection,
Evaluation and Treatment of Hypertension, WHO scientific report on primary
prevention of essential hypertension and national High Blood Pressure Education
Program's working groups report on primary prevention of hypertension have
stressed on non-drug therapies. Today busy family physicians do not spend enough
time explaining to the patient various dietary and lifestyle modifications but
straightaway prescribes medication.
Every patient of hypertension from the stage of pre-hypertension to grade 2
hypertension should follow non-drug therapy. If non-drug therapy is strictly
adhered, one can prevent cases of pre-hypertension from progressing to
hypertension stage and one can reduce or stop the medications in Grade I (mild)
hypertension. We have discussed the role of low salt, high potassium diet, role
of caffeine intake, calcium and magnesium supplements, fish oil intake,
cigarette smoking, alcohol consumption, role of physical exercise, stress
reduction and bio-feedback, yoga, meditation and acupuncture. These
recommendations regarding diet and lifestyle modifications should be targeted to
population at large through public health authorities, non-government
organizations and news media.
Sainani, G.S. Non-drug
therapy in prevention and control of hypertension. The Journal of the
Association of Physicians of India 51: 1001-6.
Helps Relieve Bed-Wetting
The authors assessed the efficacy of
acupressure for treating nocturnal enuresis compared with oxybutinin. Parents of
twelve patients administered acupressure at acupuncture points Gv4, Gv15, Gv20,
B23, B28, B32, H7, H9, St36, Sp4, Sp6, Sp12, Ren2, Ren3, Ren6, K3 and K5. Twelve
control patients received 0.4 mg/kg oxybutinin. Parents were asked to record
incidences of bed-wetting and patients and/or parents completed a questionnaire
15 days and one, three and six months after the start of treatment.
Complete and partial responses after six months of treatment were
seen in 83.3% and 16.7%, respectively, of patients treated with acupressure, and
in 58.3% and 33.3%, respectively, of children who received oxybutinin.
In conclusion, nocturnal enuresis can be partially treated by
oxybutinin but acupressure could be an alternative non-drug therapy. Acupressure
has the advantages of being non-invasive, painless and cost-effective.
Yuksek, M.S. et al. Acupressure versus oxybutinin in the
treatment of enuresis. The Journal of International Medical Research
Small Study Shows Reduced Stiff Neck
The use of subjective end-points such as VAS pain scales in
studies of acupuncture for chronic neck pain have resulted in equivocal results.
This study introduces an objective parameter as the primary end-point for the
assessment of acupuncture in patients with acute torticollis (stiff neck).
Eighteen patients underwent a single 20-minute treatment
session needling two acupuncture points -- Hou Xi (SI-3) and Zuo Zhen (M-UE-24)
-- on the side ipsilateral to the predominantly involved side of the neck.
Measuring the angle of lateral head rotation using a simple
compass and protractor revealed a mean improvement of 52.9%, more so among those
presenting within less than 24 hours as opposed to more than 72 hours.
The author concludes that objective parameters, as seen in
acupuncture research of the gastrointestinal and respiratory tracts, should be
incorporated into studies of acute and chronic neck pain. The use of sham needle
points and placebo needles is problematic since both may elicit physiological
Samuels, N. Acupuncture for acute torticollis: a pilot study.
The American Journal of Chinese Medicine 31(5): 803-7.
Acupoint Stimulation Can Help Induce
Acupuncture is being increasingly used in Western medical
practice. The authors review the various applications of acupuncture during
labor in this paper. This ancient therapeutic technique can be employed with a
significant percentage of positive results to induce labor in post-term
pregnancies, to strengthen uterine contractility and to favor cervical
The electrostimulating acupoints LI 4 Hegu and SP 6 Sanyinjiao
is the most frequently used treatment in labor induction and in increasing the
frequency and duration of uterine contractions. Moreover, the authors’
experience indicates that the BL 67 Zhiyin can be helpful in accelerating the
dilation of the cervix: the treatment is effective in about 75% of patients.
The studies on the use of acupuncture to achieve pain relief
and analgesia during labor are more controversial, mainly due to the great
heterogeneity of applied treatments and some methodological biases.
Nevertheless, the general evidence seems to be positive also for this
Allais, G., et al. Acupuncture in labor management. Minerva
ginecologica 55(6): 503-10.
Western, Oriental medicine may have cooperative benefit for
Although a number of methods for treating allergic rhinitis
have been tried, many patients have not been satisfied with their treatment. The
authors of this study evaluated the effect of a cooperative system of Oriental
and Western medicine to develop a new diagnosis protocol for treating allergic
The authors measured improvement rate and acoustic rhinometry
after the allergeninduction test and performed a filter paper test as a
nonspecific hypersensitivity test with 60 patients who are allergic to dust
mites. They divided the patients into two groups, one of which was treated with
Western medicine only and the other, which received a combination of Western and
Oriental herbal medicines.
According to one of their measurements, the authors observed
more symptomatic improvements among the patients who received a combination of
Western and Oriental medicines. In the filter paper test there was no
significant difference between the two groups.
Jeong, Su-Hyeon, et al. The effect of a cooperative system of
Oriental and Western medicine in the treatment of allergic rhinitis. Korean
Journal of Oriental Medicine 24(4):64-70.