Intramuscular and Periosteal Acupuncture in Patients
Suffering from Chronic Musculoskeletal Pain
Hansson Y, Carlsson C, Olsson E.
BACKGROUND: Periosteal acupuncture has shown promising results in clinical
practice. The aim was to compare three patient groups: one with intramuscular
acupuncture, one with periosteal acupuncture, and a third information control
group, with respect to clinically relevant pain relief, physical functioning and
intake of analgesics in patients with chronic musculoskeletal pain in the neck
or low back or both. We reported the psychological changes in these patients in
a previous issue of this journal. METHODS: 144 consecutive patients with
nociceptive pain for >3 months, aged 18-70 years were alternately allocated to:
intramuscular acupuncture (n=59); periosteal acupuncture (n=55); or control
group with information only (n=30). All patients were encouraged to stay active.
Acupuncture was administered with eight treatments during five weeks, and two
optional additional treatments after one month. Pain was estimated with a daily
VAS in a pain diary and with an average weekly pain score. Clinically relevant
pain relief was defined as at least a 30% decrease from the initial value.
Physical functioning was evaluated with Disability Rating Index. All estimations
were performed prior to treatment, one week after, and one, three and six months
after treatment. RESULTS: There were no differences between the effects of the
two acupuncture methods. There were differences between each of the two
acupuncture groups compared with the control group on all test occasions up to
one month after treatment with respect to the pain diary and one week after
treatment with respect to pain last week (P<0.05). Pain relief as measured by a
pain diary was obtained in 29 patients in the intramuscular acupuncture group,
25 in the periosteal acupuncture group, and 5 patients in the control group. Six
months after treatment, 46% of the intramuscular acupuncture patients and 45% of
the periosteal acupuncture patients had obtained pain relief in terms of the
pain diary. The corresponding figure for pain last week was 29% in each group.
CONCLUSIONS: Periosteal pecking was no more effective than standard
intramuscular acupuncture, but both were more effective than information only.
Acupunct Med. 2008 Dec;26(4):214-23
Standardized Transcutaneous Electric Acupoint Stimulation for
Relieving Tobacco Urges in Dependent Smokers
Lambert C, et al. Neuroscience Research Institute,
Peking University, 38 Xue Yuan Road, Beijing 100083, China. firstname.lastname@example.org.
The efficacy of acupuncture in smoking cessation, and its effect on the urge to
smoke are unclear. We evaluated the effect of a standardized protocol of
transcutaneous electric acupoint stimulations (TEAS) on alleviating the urge to
smoke. Ninety-eight smokers were recruited in two double-blind studies.
Participants abstained from smoking for 26 h, and were randomized to receive
TEAS alternating between 2 and 100 Hz at four acupoints (LI4 and PC8, PC6 and
TE5) at four different intensities (10, 5, Intermittent 5 or 0 mA). The urge to
smoke was assessed by the Questionnaire of Smoking Urges (QSU-Brief). In
Experiment 1, the 10 mA group (n = 20) was compared with the 5 mA group (n =
20); the increase in smoking urges did not differ significantly. Considering the
possibility that 5 mA may be an active intervention, in Experiment 2, a true
placebo (0 mA), and a proxy of placebo [Intermittent 5 mA (i5 mA)] were compared
with 10 mA TEAS. In this experiment, 10 mA (n = 20) TEAS showed a tendency to
alleviate smoking urges compared with 0 mA (n = 16), and i5 mA (n = 19) TEAS.
Only when the data of smokers with Fagerstöm Test for Nicotine Dependence score
>/=5 were analyzed that the difference between the 10 mA group and the control
group (0 and i5 mA) became significant. Based on these preliminary findings, we
conclude that TEAS applied on the skin may antagonize the increase in urge to
smoke in abstinent-dependent smokers. It seems warranted to assess the efficacy
of TEAS in smoking cessation clinical trials involving a larger population of
Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2008 Dec 10.
Astragalus Membranaceus and Angelica Sinensis in Treating
Renal Microvascular Lesions
Song JY, et al. Department of Nephrology, First
Hospital of Peking University, Beijing.
It has been known that the renal microvasular lesions could aggravate the
progress of glomerular sclerosis and tubulo-interstitial fibrosis in chronic
kidney diseases. Modern pharmacological studies indicated that the two
traditional Chinese herbs, Astragalus membranaceus and Angelica sinensis, could
improve micorvascular lesions through multiple mechanisms, including increasing
local renal blood flow to lessen the hypoxic renal injury, promoting the
recovery of renal blood flow and glomerular filtration rate after
ischemia-reperfusion, modulating the imbalance of vaso-activators such as nitric
oxide and angiotensin, increasing the expression of vascular epithelial growth
factor and inhibiting the release of the intracellular calcium ion and promoting
DNA synthesis in endothelial cells to improve the function of endothelial cells.
These evidences suggest that Astragalus membranaceus and Angelica sinensis may
retard the progress of renal diseases through the above-mentioned mechanisms.
Zhongguo Zhong Xi Yi Jie He Za Zhi. 2008 Sep;28(9):859-61