Electroacupuncture Reduces Neuropathic Pain, Study Finds

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Electroacupuncture therapy can decrease neuropathic pain following a brachial plexus injury, according to a study published in Neural Regeneration Research.

During electroacupuncture, needles are inserted in specific points along the body. Unlike traditional acupuncture, the needles are then attached to a device that generates continuous electric pulses. Depending on what condition is being treated, the frequency and intensity of the pulses can be altered. Electroacupuncture has traditionally been used to treat pain, but its effect on pain following a brachial plexus injury had previously been unknown.

In the study, rats with avulsion injuries to the left brachial plexus root were given electroacupuncture stimulation at bilateral Quchi (LI11), Hegu (LI04), Zuslani (ST36), and Yanglingquan (GB34). This type of injury is associated with upper-limb chronic neuropathic pain.

After receiving electroacupuncture therapy for 28 days, the chronic neuropathic pain in the rats’ upper limbs was significantly reduced. Immunofluorescence staining showed that the expression of beta-endorphins in the arcuate nucleus increased significantly after therapy.

These results indicate that electroacupuncture can decrease neuropathic pain following a brachial plexus injury by increasing beta-endorphin expression.

electroacupuncture
Electroacupuncture Reduces Neuropathic Pain, Study Finds

Electroacupuncture has traditionally been used to treat pain, but its effect on pain following brachial plexus injury is still unknown. This study published in Neural Regeneration Research tested the effects of electroacupuncture on rat models with an avulsion injury to the left brachial plexus root, which is associated with upper-limb chronic neuropathic pain. 

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