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Chen WT et al, 2014: An Evaluation of Electroacupuncture at the Weizhong Acupoint (BL-40) as a Means of Relieving Pain Induced by Extracorporeal Shock Wave Lithotripsy.

Chen WT, Chang FC, Chen YH, Lin JG

Department of Chinese Medicine, Taiwan Landseed Hospital, No. 77, Kwang-Tai Road, Ping-jen City, Tao-Yuan County 32405, Taiwan.
Department of Veterinary Medicine, National Taiwan University, No. 1, Section 4, Roosevelt Road, Taipei 10617, Taiwan.
Graduate Institute of Acupuncture Science, China Medical University, No. 91 Hsueh-Shih Road, Taichung 40402, Taiwan.
School of Chinese Medicine, China Medical University, No. 91 Hsueh-Shih Road, Taichung 40402, Taiwan.

Abstract

Background. Extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy (ESWL) is the preferred option for urolithiasis treatment. However, intensities of pain may be induced and the sedative anesthetic or analgesics were usually needed. The aim of this study was to develop an improved acupuncture-assisted anesthesia approach in pain relief. Methods. We conducted a single-blind, randomized controlled study in China Medical University Hospital. Patients treated by ESWL due to upper urolithiasis were randomly divided into control group, sham-EA group, and 100 Hz EA group. The high frequency electroacupuncture (EA) was applied at the Weizhong acupoint (100 Hz EA group) for 20 minutes prior to the ESWL. In the sham-EA group, the same procedures were performed as those of 100 Hz EA group but no electric current was given tostimulate the acupoints. In the control group, no action was taken before operation. The information including the numbers and dosage of analgesic requirements, pain score, vital signs, and the satisfaction of procedure was collected. Results. A total of 74 subjects were recruited and we found that the interval to the first request analgesic, the number/total dosage of additional analgesic, recovery time from anesthesia, and the satisfaction were all better in both the 100 Hz EA and the sham-EA group. The 100 Hz EA also
showed better relief of painful sensations by delaying the onset of pain. Conclusions. The 100 Hz EA and the sham-EA can effectively relieve pain due to ESWL as well as reducing the dosage of opium analgesic used. 

Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2014;2014:592319. doi: 10.1155/2014/592319. Epub 2014 Jul 23.

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Comments 1

Hans-Göran Tiselius on Wednesday, 29 October 2014 07:52

It is interesting to note that the skilful application of electro-acupuncture (EA) reduced the need of analgesics during SWL and accordingly made the patients more satisfied with the treatment procedure. Although also sham-EA resulted in pain relief the effect was more evident with active EA. It can be assumed, however, that very specific expertise is required for a positive effect of this alternative Chinese method.

It is interesting to note that the skilful application of electro-acupuncture (EA) reduced the need of analgesics during SWL and accordingly made the patients more satisfied with the treatment procedure. Although also sham-EA resulted in pain relief the effect was more evident with active EA. It can be assumed, however, that very specific expertise is required for a positive effect of this alternative Chinese method.
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