An evaluation of electroacupuncture at the Weizhong acupoint (BL-40) as a means of relieving pain induced by extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy - 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 to stimulate 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.

Written by:
Chen WT, Chang FC, Chen YH, Lin JG.   Are you the author?
Department of Chinese Medicine, Taiwan Landseed Hospital, No. 77, Kwang-Tai Road, Ping-jen City, Tao-Yuan County 32405, Taiwan; 2Department of Veterinary Medicine, National Taiwan University, No. 1, Section 4, Roosevelt Road, Taipei 10617, Taiwan; 3Graduate Institute of Acupuncture Science, China Medical University, No. 91 Hsueh-Shih Road, Taichung 40402, Taiwan; 4School of Chinese Medicine, China Medical University, No. 91 Hsueh-Shih Road, Taichung 40402, Taiwan.

Reference: Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2014;2014:592319.
doi: 10.1155/2014/592319

PubMed Abstract
PMID: 25152761 Endourology Section