Electro-acupuncture & Lumbar Disc Protrusion
abstracted & translated by
Honroa Lee Wolfe, Lic. Ac., FNAAOM (USA)
Keywords: Chinese medicine, acupuncture, electro-acupuncture, lumbar disc protrusion
On page 28 of issue #6, 2004 of the Hu Nan Zhong Yi Za Zhi (Hunan Journal of Chinese Medicine), Xiong Jian of the Changsha Municipal Chinese Medical Hospital published an article titled, “The Treatment of 56 Cases of Lumbar Disc Protrusion with a Combination of Electro-acupuncture, Network Vessel Pricking & Cupping.” A summary of this article is presented below.
There were 31 males and 25 females enrolled in this study. These patients were 19-72 years of age, sixteen suffered from disc protrusion between L3-L4. Twenty-one suffered disc protrusion between L4-S1, and 19 between L5-S1. Diagnosis of lumbar disc protrusion was confirmed by CT scan. Patients with tumors, tuberculosis, and missing lumbar vertebrae were excluded from this study.
Points needled consisted of:
Hua Tuo paravertebral points
Ming Men (GV 4)
Yao Yang Guan (GV 3)
Huan Tiao (GB 30)
Feng Shi (GB 31)
Yang Ling Quan (GB 34)
Qiu Xu (GB 40)
Xuan Zhong (GB 39)
After disinfecting the skin, each of these points was needled with a 30 gauge 40-75mm long fine needle. These needles were stimulated with twisting and turning supplementing and draining hand technique, after which they were attached to a 6805-2A electro-acupuncture machine. The points were divided up into 2-3 groups and stimulated with a dense-disperse wave-form to the degree the patient could bear. The needles were retained for 20-30 minutes. After the needles were removed, a plum blossom hammer was used to cause a slight degree of bleeding over the affected area. This was then followed by cupping for 10-15 minutes. This protocol was done once per day, with 10 treatments equaling one course.
Cure was defined as disappearance of low back and leg pain, with ability to lift the leg 70% straight up or more and return to normal activities and work. Improvement meant that the lumbar and leg pain had decreased, low back function had improved, and the patient was able to basically conduct his or her normal lifestyle and work. No effect meant that there was no change in the patient’s condition. Based on these criteria, 46 patients were judged cured after two courses of treatment, eight improved, and two got no effect. Therefore, the cure rate was 82.1% and the total effectiveness rate was 96.4%.
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