Acupuncture and Remedial Massage Therapy in Melbourne CBD

Neuroprotective Mechanism found between Acupuncture and Sciatic nerve

Acupuncture has been found to inhibit nerve cell death due to the sciatic nerve impairment. According to the latest research, shallow acupuncture and deep acupuncture at Huantiao pt.(GB-30) have successfully promoted motor functional recovery, improved nerve conduction velocity and boosted regeneration of sciatic nerve cells. Liaoning University of Traditional Chinese Medicine researchers note “both shallow and deep acupuncture reversed pathological changes of impaired nerve cells and inhibited nerve cell death”. Microscopic observation shows that there were less Schwann cells, Wallerian degeneration and axonal and myelin breakdown after receiving shallow or deep acupuncture. For the deep acupuncture group, an acupuncture needle was inserted into GB-30 , reaching as deep as 8mm. High frequency ultrasound imaging technology was used to ensure that the needle was placed at the sciatic nerve trunk. For the shallow acupuncture group, an acupuncture needle was inserted into GB-30 reaching a depth 3-5mm. The needle was inserted into the muscle level and didn’t reach the nerve level. After needle insertion, an SDZ-II electro acupuncture device was connected to the needles for 20minutes. The acupuncture session was conducted daily for 14consecutive days. Following acupuncture treatment, number of living cells were increased in both deep and shallow acupuncture groups…the deep acupuncture group produced better outcomes in downregulating cell death numbers and in upregulating SFI, MNCV, and PI3K and PKB protein levels on day 28 of modeling.
The results of the research indicate that acupuncture is an effective treatment modality for sciatic nerve impairment.
Researchers demonstrate that acupuncture improves motor function and conduction velocity of the sciatic nerve while inhibiting nerve cell death by regulating pathways responsible for providing Neuroprotective effects.
(Extract from an article “Acupuncture Sciatic Nerve Neuroprotective Mechanism Found”.

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Acupuncture benefits patients suffering from unilateral paralysis after a stroke

Researchers from Traditional Chinese Medicine Hospital of Banjul compared daily exercise mono therapy with acupuncture and just daily exercises….patient outcomes were consistently superior in the combined therapy group, demonstrating that the addition of acupuncture to the daily exercise treatment regimen improves clinical outcomes. The researchers conclude that acupuncture plus rehabilitation exercises improve motor function and cerebral blood flow, making it an effective intervention for post-stroke hemiplegia.
Blood flow changes in the brain were measured with transcranial Doppler device. This was used to monitor the movement of blood in the anterior, middle and posterior cerebral arteries. Both groups showed marked improvements but improvements in the combined therapy group (with acupuncture) were significantly greater (p<0.05). The measurements demonstrate that the addition of acupuncture to the treatment protocol enhances recuperation within the human brain. Total of 70 patients with hemiplegia were recruited. Patients were randomly assigned to two groups. Both groups received standard physical rehabilitation exercises and one group received acupuncture. Acupuncture was performed on the side of the body affected by hemiplegia. Points on the upper limb included LI11 (Quchi), LI4 (Hegu), LI 10 (Shousanli), and SI3 (Houxi). Points on the lower limb included ST36 (Zusanli), GB30 (Huantiao), SP6 (Sanyinjiao), and LV3 (Taichong). Filiform needles 40-75mm in length were used to needle the points and were manually manipulated to obtain Deqi. The needles were retained for 20minutes per acupuncture session. Treatment was administered once daily, with 10 treatments comprising one course. A total of 10 courses of treatment were administered consecutively.

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Acupuncture speeds the healing of shingles

Acupuncture painkilling relief for shingles found;
Acupuncture relieves pain due to shingles, …speeds the healing of herpes zoster lesions and reduces incidence of postherpetic neuralgia. Tianjing University of Traditional Chinese Medicine researchers combined acupuncture with standard drug therapy. Patients receiving both drug therapy and acupuncture in a combined treatment protocol had superior patient outcomes compared with patients using only drug therapy.
Three month follow up examinations determined that the incident rate of postherpetic neuralgia plummeted to 3.33% in the group receiving acupuncture plus drug therapy. The group receiving only drug therapy had a PHN incident rate of 30%. The addition of acupuncture to the treatment protocol decreased the PHN rate by 26.67%. The Visual Analogue Scale scores in the acupuncture plus drugs group were significantly better. The addition of acupuncture to drug therapy decreased pain levels, patients required less painkillers and herpetic lesions healed faster. The researchers conclude that the combination of acupuncture plus drug therapy is safe and effective for the treatment of acute herpes zoster (shingles).
The study design was as follows; a total of 78patients were randomly distributed into a control group and treatment group, each consisting of 39cases. The control group received drug therapy. The treatment group received acupuncture plus the same drug therapy administered to control group. All patients were diagnosed with acute herpes zoster between June 2014 and December 2015. Patients from both groups consumed 0.5g of oral famciclovir tablets (3times per day, for 7 consecutive days) as well as 1-2tablets of oral tramadol (3times per day, for 10-12 consecutive days). Famciclovir is antiviral drug used for the treatment of herpes zoster…. Tramadol is an opioid pain reliever…. and Neurotropin is a drug made from inoculated, inflamed rabbit skin that is used for the treatment of neuropathic pain.
The primary acupoints were as follows:
LI4 (Hegu), Ashi (skin lesion areas), LI11 (Quchi), Jiaji.
Additional acupoints were administered based on differential diagnosis….; for hyperactivity of liver fire LV3 (Taichong), TB6 (Zhigou). For dampness and heat in the spleen & stomach SP6 (Sanyinjiao), SP10 (Xuehai). For Qi stagnation and blood stasis BL17 (Geshu).
References: Wang Y. Acupuncture Combined with Western Medication for the treatment of Acute Herpes Zoster and for the Prevention of Postherpetic Neuralgia: A clinical Study Tianjing University of TCM. Journal of China Prescription Drug, 2016,14(9):96-97.

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Acupuncture treatment for carpal tunnel syndrome

The carpal tunnel is a canal connecting the forearm and hand. Carpal tunnel syndrome pain and numbness is due to compression of the median nerve travelling through the canal. Researchers demonstrate that acupuncture benefits the median nerve thus successfully alleviating pain, inflammation and numbness. Early diagnosis and intervention is crucial in mitigating median nerve function. Acupuncture alleviates median nerve compression by reducing oedema and accelerating axonal regeneration. Local acupoint selections are commonly implemented to enhance the microcirculation of blood to the median nerve and carpal tunnel. Common acupuncture points recommend for the treatment of carpal tunnel syndrome are : PC-7, PC-6, LI-4, LI-5, TH-5
Researchers Wang Ye and Bai Yichen from Affiliated Hospital of Liaoning Traditional Chinese Medicine University find that acupuncture combined with herbal paraffin treatment was more effective than diclofenac, a non-steroidal antiinflammatory drug. In a 16 week clinical trial, two patient groups were compared. One group received acupuncture and herbal paraffin treatment, the other received topical diclofenac. The results highlight that acupuncture with herbal paraffin treatment produces greater pain relief and restoration of wrist function than a topical antiinflammatory.
(Extract from an article shared by AACMA Feb.2018)

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Acupuncture outperforms drug for Insomnia

Recently published research by Zhejiang Chinese Medical University finds Acupuncture more effective than a powerful drug for improving sleep duration, quality, latency, efficiency, and daytime functioning. Acupuncture achieved a 92.9% total effective rate and the drug zopiclone achieved a 67.9% total effective rate.
Zopiclone is a central nervous system depressant used for helping patients fall asleep and maintaining sleep throughout the night. The Zhejiang Chinese Medical University research indicates acupuncture is more effective than zopiclone for improving these sleep parameters. Zopiclone is limited to short term use because patients develop dependence, risking possibility of addiction. Consequently, withdrawal symptoms are similar to those of benzodiazepines. The research indicates that acupuncture is an effective alternative without the adverse effects associated with drug intake.
A total of 112patients with primary insomnia were randomised into an acupuncture group and a zopiclone group.
Zopiclone was administered in 7.5mg doses, once per day for 30 days. Acupuncture had the following points inserted with 0.25mm diameter, 40mm length filiform acupuncture needles:
Primary points were Baihui (GV20), Sishencong (EX-HN1), Anmian (extra point of GB-20 and Yiming. Secondary acupuncture points were added based on diagnostic considerations.
Extract from an article published by healthcmi.com

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Acupuncture can reduce Hypertension

Recent study has demonstrated that acupuncture treatment can reduce hypertension….The University of California School of Medicine researchers have proven that acupuncture produces long-lasting lowering of blood pressure in subjects with hypertension. Acupuncture regulates sympathetic nervous system responses resulting in lower blood pressure in cardiovascular related centres of the brain and “specific neurotransmitter systems”. In addition, their cross-over double blinded research identifies specific acupuncture points and procedures that are especially effective for lowering blood pressure.
The researchers note that electroacupuncture is effective “at two sets of standartized acupoints known to provide input to brain stem regions that regulate sympathetic outflow lowers blood pressure…”
First electroacupuncture is administered once per week for 30min acupuncture sessions over period of 8weeks. Monthly acupuncture maintenance treatments maintain healthy low blood pressure for at least 6months.
The University of California School of Medicine researchers find acupuncture a mediator of the autonomic nervous system. This mechanism resulted in a lowering of both systolic and diastolic blood pressure in subjects with hypertension. Furthermore, the researchers successfully differentiated acupuncture points that were effective from those that were not. Using 24/7 ambulatory blood pressure monitoring equipment, electroacupuncture applied to PC5-PC6 and St36-St37 was effective for reducing peak and average systolic and diastolic blood pressure. The results were published in the Journal of Intensive and Critical Care.
The researchers have also discovered that manual acupuncture and electroacupuncture produce similar results at PC5 and PC6. Low frequency acupuncture proved more effective than higher frequencies. Two Hz electroacupuncture activated more somatic afferents than 10 or 20 Hz electroacupuncture……

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Can Acupuncture make us feel and look younger?

According to a recently published article, there is much more to acupuncture than just helping with aches and pains….Regular acupuncture can make us feel more energetic and reduce the outward signs of ageing. Here are some of the ways acupuncture can turn back the hands of time.
First it can reduce stress; acupuncture releases stress-reducing, natural pain killing chemicals in the brain called endorphins.
Second it improves sleep, as it has the ability to calm the mind. It also reduces pain, boosts immune system and its most valuable long term effect is more energy and vitality.
Extract from an article published by AACMA.

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Can Acupuncture help with Chronic fatigue syndrome?

According to a recent research at “Shenzhen Hospital of Chinese Medicine, researchers determined that acupuncture is safe and effective for the alleviation of chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS). Subjective documentation of symptomatic improvements and objective measurements including (IgA and IgG levels) record a 90% total effective rate and a 50% total recovery rate. the researchers conclude, Acupuncture at the eight influential points has a definite therapeutic effect on CFS and improves the immune system functions in CFS patients….
Traditional Chinese medicine identifies multiple pattern differentiations responsible for CFS. The research treatment protocol for CFS was developed by using acupoints specified in the Huangdi Bashiyi Nanjing (The Huang Emperors Canon of 81 Difficult Issues). The researchers used a set of acupoints known as the Eight Influential Points. The following Eight Influential Points were applied with manual acupuncture techniques:
LV 13 (Zang organ point)
CV 12 (Fu organ point)
CV 17 (QI point)
BL 17 (Blood point)
GB 34 (Tendon point)
LU 9 (Pulse point)
BL 11 (Bone point)
GB 39 (Marrow point)
Patients rested in a supine position for acupuncture therapy. Needle length ranged from 25-40mm. Mild reinforcing and attenuating acupuncture techniques were applied. Needle retention time was 30minutes per acupuncture session. Moxibustion was applied to CV 12. The therapy was administered 1time per day and 10times comprised one course of care. The study encompassed 3courses of care per patient. A3 day break between courses of care was observed.
The 90% total effective rate and the 50% cure rate demonstrate that acupuncture is effective for the treatment of CFS…..Li et al. find that conventional acupuncture produces an 80.85% total effective rate and Qihuan acupuncture produces a 95.83% total effective rate. Qihuan acupuncture produced a 33% total recovery rate and standart acupuncture produced a 21.27% total recovery rate. The standart acupuncture group received needling at the following acupoints:
Pishuu (BL 20)
Ganshu (BL 18)
Shenshu (BL 23)
Shanzhong (CV 17)
Zusanli (St 36)
Guanyuan (CV 4)
Baihui (DU 20)
Supplementary acupuncture points were added based on differential diagnostic patterns. For Spleen Qi deficiency, (SP 3) and (SP 6) were added. For insomnia (HT 7) and (KD 6)were added. For loss of memory function, Yintang and (DU 26) were added. For liver Qi stagnation (LV 3) and (PC 6) were added….
Qihuan acupuncture is the application of eight acupuncture needles in a 0.5 inch radius around the navel at 45 degree angles forming way to visualise the acupoint locations is at 12,3,6, and 9 o’clock to CV 8 plus the areas halfway between each clock designation for a total of eight directions…acupuncture was administered in a same way as above…two courses of care were administered.
The studies confirm that acupuncture is safe and effective treatment of the CFS.”
For more information go to healthcmi.com

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Research review into lower back pain

“A new study published in the journal Pain Medicine, finds that massage may provide lasting relief for clients with chronic lower back pain.
The common research design involved treatment with standardised massage sessions…In this new research, therapists were free to design massage programs according to the patients.
The researchers recruited 104 people with persistent back pain who were referred by their doctors to licenced massage therapists. Modalities used by therapists varied ….eg. active isolated stretching, myofacial techniques, trigger point therapy, reflexology, acupressure etc….
Treatment was 10sessions over 12weeks.
After 12 weeks, more than half the patients reported improved outcomes in terms of pain reduction, and a meaningful physical and mental improvement. In addition the improvement still lasted after 24weeks. Several people improved so much that their scores on a standard screening test dropped below the threshold for disability.
While improvement was observed across the board, there were few demographic trends. Adults older than age 49 years had better pain and disability outcomes than younger adults. People with obesity tended to improve, but those gains didn’t last. People taking opioids were two times less likely to experience meaningful changes, compared to those not taking them.
The study has limitation as it doesn’t have a control. However as noted by Prof.Aaron E.Carroll from Indiana University School of Medicine; given the natural course of back pain… the ideal approach is to treat the symptoms and let the body heal. ”
Extract from an article published in Massage & Myotherapy Journal, Vol 15, issue 3

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Acupuncture points used in Tapping therapy

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