Osteoporosis Acupuncture Research

This short article presents a summary of an acupuncture study conducted on bone mineral density in post menopausal women who were diagnosed with osteoporosis. In traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), bone loss is considered a Kidney energy disturbance. By regulating this energy, it was shown that women gained a statistically significant amount of bone density compared with a control group.

The Effect of Acupuncture on Bone Mineral Density in Postmenopausal Women

The Effect of Acupuncture on Bone Mineral Density in Postmenopausal Women, by Ouyang Gang et al: According to the TCM theory that the Kidney is in charge of bone, the authors studied the effect of acupuncture to reinforce the Kidney in 42 cases of postmenopausal osteoporosis.

In the treatment group of 25 cases, low bone mass (defined as between 1 and 2 standard deviations from the norm) was present in 16 cases and osteoporosis (M-2SD) was present in the remainder, with single or multiple fractures. In the control group of 17 cases, low bone mass was found in 11 cases and osteoporosis in 6.

The points selected were Shenshu BL-23, Guanyuan REN-4 and Taixi KID-3.

Two inch 30# needles were slowly inserted into the selected points as the patient breathed out. After needling sensation was elicited, manipulation with heavy thrusting and gentle lifting was performed for one minute. The needles were retained for 30 minutes, during which time they were manipulated once. At the end of the treatment, the needles were rapidly lifted to the subcutaneouslayer while the patient breathed in. After withdrawing the needles the points were pressed and kneaded.

The treatment was given once every other day, with 3 months constituting one therapeutic course and a ten day interval between courses. Both the treatment group and the control group were given calcium and vitamin D daily for 6 months.

A comparison of bone mineral density before and after treatment between the two groups showed improvements in both groups, but significantly better results in the treatment group (P<0.05). In the control group, the average density of 0.908g/[cm.sup.2] [+ or -] 0.072 rose to 0.913 [+ or -] 0.066, a difference of 0.005 [+ or -] 0013. In the treatment group, the mean density of 0.907 [+ or -] 0.072 rose to 0.923 [+ or -] 0.070, which represents a 0.013 [+ or -] 0.012 improvement.

The use of [acupuncture points] Dazhong KID-4, Guanyuan REN-4 and Shenshu BL-23 tonifies the Kidney and replenishes the vital essence.

In western medical terms, the authors state that use of Guanyuan REN-4 and Shenshu BL-23 has been shown to increase gonadal hormone levels which play a part in inhibiting bone re-absorption, and that the treatment may also improve the ability of the body to absorb orally administered calcium (3/02).

COPYRIGHT 2002 The Journal of Chinese Medicine
Copyright 2002 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

The Journal of Traditional Chinese Medicine Abstracts March & June 2002
Author: Gang, Ouyang
Publication: The Journal of Chinese Medicine
Date: Oct 1, 2002

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