Acupuncture Effect on Pain

  • Wen-Hsieh Wu
  • Jiang Ye
Chapter

Abstract

Acupuncture has been used in China for thousands of years to maintain the health status and treat diseases by adjusting and balancing the negative, Yin, and positive, Yang, energy. It has also been used to treat different types of pain disorders. In this chapter, the effort will be devoted to summarize the scientific basis for its use in pain control. The discussion will be divided into the following sections:
  • the current knowledge of acute and chronic pain mechanisms

  • possible explanation for acupuncture/electro-acupuncture (EA) effect on these mechanisms, and

  • the critical and scientific review on highly discriminated clinical investigations for its effectiveness.

Keywords

Ischemia Dopamine Migraine Nicotine Morphine 

Preview

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

Unable to display preview. Download preview PDF.

References

  1. 1.
    Ao M, Wei J, Tan Z, Hu Q, Tang J. [The influence of EA with different frequencies on the discharges of neurons in rostral ventromedial medulla on rats]. Zhen Ci Yan Jiu. 1996; 21 (4): 41–5.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Chen XH, Han JS. Analgesia induced by electroacupuncture of different frequencies is mediated by different types of opioid receptors: another cross-tolerance study. Behav Brain Res. 1992; 47 (2): 143–9.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Cho ZH, Chung SC, Jones JP, Park JB, Park HJ, Lee HJ, Wong EK, Min BI. New findings of the correlation between acupoints and corresponding brain cortices using functional MRI. Proc Natl Acad Sci U S A. 1998; 95 (5): 2670–3.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Fan SG, Qu ZC, Zhe QZ, Han JS. GABA: antagonistic effect on electroacupuncture analgesia and morphine analgesia in the rat. Life Sci. 1982; 31 (12–13): 1225–8.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Gao M, Wang M, Li K, He L. Changes of mu opioid receptor binding sites in rat brain following electroacupuncture. Acupunct Electrother Res. 1997; 22 (3–4): 161–6.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Ha H, Tan EC, Fukunaga H, Aochi 0. Naloxone reversal of acupuncture analgesia in the monkey. Exp Neurol. 1981; 73 (1): 298–303.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    Han JS, Xie GX, Zhou ZF, Folkesson R, Terenius L. Acupuncture mechanisms in rabbits studied with microinjection of antibodies against beta-endorphin, enkephalin and substance P. Neuropharmacology. 1984; 23 (1): 1–5.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    Han JS, Zhang RL. Suppression of morphine abstinence syndrome by body electroacupuncture of different frequencies in rats. Drug Alcohol Depend. 1993; 31 (2): 169–75.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Han JS. The neurochemical basis of pain relief by acupuncture. 1998 Hubei Science and Technology press. China.Google Scholar
  10. 10.
    Han JS. Mechanisms of acupuncture analgesia. 1999 Brain Science series Shanghai, China.Google Scholar
  11. 11.
    Han Z, Jiang YH, Wan Y, Wang Y, Chang JK, flan JS. Endomorphin-1 mediates 2 Hz but not 100 Hz electroacupuncture analgesia in the rat. Neurosci Lett. 1999; 274 (2): 75–8.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  12. 12.
    Henry P, Baille H, Dartigues JF, Jogeix M. Headache and acupuncture. In Pfaffenrath V, Lundberg PO, Sjaastad O. ed. Updating in Headache. Berlin: Springer Verlag, 1985.Google Scholar
  13. 13.
    Herz A. Endogenous opioid systems and alcohol addiction. Psychopharmacology, 1997; 129: 99–111.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    Ho WK, Wen HL, Lam S, Ma L. The influence of electro-acupuncture on naloxone-induced morphine withdrawal in mice: elevation of brain opiate-like activity. Eur J Pharmacol 1978; 49 (2): 197–9.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  15. 15.
    Huang Z, Tong Z, Sun W [Effect of electroacupuncture on the discharges of pain-sensitive neurons in the hypothalamic dorsomedial nucleus of rats].Zhen Ci Yan Jiu. 1995; 20(1): 20–3. Chinese.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  16. 16.
    Hui KK, Liu J, Makris N, Gollub RL, Chen AJ, Moore CI, Kennedy DN, Rosen BR, Kwong KK. Acupuncture modulates the limbic system and subcortical gray structures of the human brain: evidence from fMRI studies in normal subjects. Hum Brain Mapp. 2000; 9 (1): 13–25.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. 17.
    Kim MR,Yoon SS, Kwon YK, Kim KJ, Shim I, Lee HJ, Kang GH, Yang CH. Acupuncture-mediated reduction in ethanol-induced dopamine release in the rat nucleus accumbens. Abstract (980.5), Society for Neurosci. 2001.Google Scholar
  18. 18.
    Lar ZF, Cao QS, Chen SP, Han ZJ. Effect of electro-acupuncture of “Neiguan” on spontaneous discharges of single unit in amygdaloid nucleus in rabbits. J Tradit Chin Med. 1989; 9 (2): 144–50.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  19. 19.
    Lewith GT, Machin D. On the evaluation of the clinical effects of acupuncture. Pain. 1983; 16(2): 111–27. Review.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. 20.
    Liu J, Han Z, Chen S, Cao Q. [Influence of electroacupuncture of neiguan (PC 6) on ami-induced changes in electrical activity of dorsal horn neurons]. Zhen Ci Yan Jiu. 1994; 19(1): 37–41. Chinese.Google Scholar
  21. 21.
    Ma QP, Zhou Y, Han JS. Electroacupuncture accelerated the expression of c-Fos protooncogene in dopaminergic neurons in the ventral tegmental area of the rat. Int J Neurosci. 1993; 70 (3–4): 217–22.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. 22.
    Margolin A, Kleber HD, Avants SK, Konefal J, Gawin F, Stark E, Sorensen J, Midkiff E, Wells E, Jackson TR, Mayer DJ, Price DD, Rafii A. Antagonism of acupuncture analgesia in man by the narcotic antagonist naloxone. Brain Res. 1977; 121 (2): 368–72.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. 23.
    Melzack R. Acupuncture and related forms of folk medicine. In: Melzack R, Wall PD, ed. Textbook of Pain. London: Churchill Libvingstone, 1984.Google Scholar
  24. 24.
    Mihic SJ. Acute effects of ethanol on GABAA and glycine receptor function. Neurochem Int. 1999; 35(2): 115–23. Review.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  25. 25.
    Miriam Melis, Rosana Camarini, Mark A. Ungless, and Antonello Bonci Long-Lasting Potentiation of GABAergic Synapses in Dopamine Neurons after a Single In Vivo Ethanol Exposure. J. Neurosci. 2002; 22: 2074–2082Google Scholar
  26. 26.
    Ng L. Auricular acupuncture in animals: effects of opiate withdrawal and involvement of endorphins. J Altern Complement Med. 1996, 2 (1): 61–3.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. 27.
    Ng LK, Douthitt TC, Thoa NB, Albert CA. Modification of morphine-withdrawal syndrome in rats following transauricular electrostimulation: an experimental paradigm for auricular electroacupuncture. Biological Psychiatry, 1975, 10, 575–580.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  28. 28.
    Pomeranz B, Chiu D. Naloxone blockade of acupuncture analgesia: endorphin implicated. Life Sci. 1976; 19 (11): 1757–62.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. 29.
    Pomeranz B, Warma N. Electroacupuncture suppression of a nociceptive reflex is potentiated by two repeated electroacupuncture treatments: the first opioid effect potentiates a second non-opioid effect. Brain Res. 1988; 452 (1–2): 232–6.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  30. 30.
    Pomeranz B. 1987. Scientific basis of acupuncture:text book and atlas. Berlin, Germany: Springer-Verlag.Google Scholar
  31. 31.
    Pontieri FE, Tanda G, Orzi F, Di Chiara G. Effects of nicotine on the nucleus accumbens and similarity to those of addictive drugs. Nature. 1996; 382 (6588): 255–7.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. 32.
    Price DD, Mayer DJ. Evidence for endogenous opiate analgesic mechanisms triggered by somatosensory stimulation (including acupuncture) in man. Pain Forum 1994; 4: 40–43.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. 33.
    Qian XZ, moxibustion and acupuncture anesthesia by integrating traditional Chinese and Western medicine. Ed. Zhang XT, Research on acupuncture, moxibustion, and acupuncture anesthesia, Science press, Beijing, 1986; 1–18.Google Scholar
  34. 34.
    Richardson PH, Vincent CA. Acupuncture for the treatment of pain: a review of evaluative research. Pain. 1986; 24(1): 15–40. ReviewPubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. 35.
    Robbins TW, Everitt BJ. Neurobehavioural mechanisms of reward and motivation. Curr Opin Neurobiol. 1996; 6(2): 228–36. Review.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. 36.
    Sjolund BH, Eriksson MB. The influence of naloxone on analgesia produced by peripheral conditioning stimulation. Brain Res. 1979; 173 (2): 295–301.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. 37.
    Stux G, Hammerschlag R (Eds) 2000. Clinical acupuncture: Scientific basis. Berlin, Germany: Springer-Verlag.Google Scholar
  38. 38.
    Tang D, Advances of research on the mechanism of acupuncture and moxibustion. Acu Res. 1987, 4: 278–284.Google Scholar
  39. 39.
    Thorer H, Volf N. Acupuncture after alcohol consumption: a sham controlled assessment. Acupunct Med 1996; 14 (2): 63–7.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. 40.
    Vazquez J, Munoz M, Caceres JL.Modifications in the distribution of met-enkephalin in the limbic system of the cat brain after electroacupuncture. An immunocytochemical study. Histol Histopathol. 1995; 10 (3): 577–82.PubMedGoogle Scholar
  41. 41.
    Vincent CA. A controlled trial of the treatment of migraine by acupuncture.Clin J Pain. 1989; 5 (4): 305–12.Google Scholar
  42. 42.
    Vincent, C and Lewith, G: Placebo controls for acupuncture studies J Roy Soc Med 1995, 88: 199–202.Google Scholar
  43. 43.
    Wang B, Luo F, Xia YQ, Han JS Peripheral electric stimulation inhibits morphine-induced place preference in rats. Neuroreport. 2000; 11 (5): 1017–20.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. 44.
    Weight FF, Li C, Peoples RW. Alcohol action on membrane ion channels gated by extracellular ATP (P2X receptors). Neurochem Int. 1999; 35(2): 143–52. Review.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. 45.
    Wen HL, Cheung SYC. Treatment of drug addiction by acupuncture and electrical stimulation. Asian J. of Med. 1973; 9: 138–141.Google Scholar
  46. 46.
    Wu LZ, Cui CL, Han JS. Effects of electrical acupuncture on the heart rates in human with morphine withdrawal syndrome. Journal of Chinese pain medicine. 1996; 2: 98–102.Google Scholar
  47. 47.
    Wu LZ, Cui CL, Han IS. Suppression of morphine abstinence syndrome by body acupuncture of different frequencies in human. Journal of Chinese pain medicine, 1995; 1: 30–38.Google Scholar
  48. 48.
    Wu LZ, Cui CL, Tian JB, Ji D, Han JS. Suppression of morphine withdrawal by electroacupuncture in rats: dynorphin and kappa-opioid receptor implicated. Brain Res. 1999; 851 (1–2): 290–6.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. 49.
    Yang CL, Shin I, Lee HI, Jin C, Kim MR, Roh HI, Song JH, Yoon SS, Kwon YK, Lim S, Golden GT. Acupuncture attenuates cocaine-induced dopamine release in the nucleus accumbens and locomotor activity of the rats. Soc. Neurosci 2000; 26 (part 1): 795, abs 293. 17.Google Scholar
  50. 50.
    Ying SX, Cheng JS. Effects of electro-acupuncture on C-FOS expression in gerbil hippocampus during transient global ischemia.Acupunct Electrother Res. 1994; 19 (4): 207–13.Google Scholar
  51. 51.
    Zhu W, Xi G, Ju J. Effect of acupuncture and Chinese medicine treatment on brain dopamine level of MPTP-lesioned C57BL mice]. Zhen Ci Yon Jiu. 1996; 21 (4): 46–9.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2003

Authors and Affiliations

  • Wen-Hsieh Wu
  • Jiang Ye

There are no affiliations available

Personalised recommendations