Acupuncture for overactive bladder

It has been estimated that over 5 million people in the UK suffer from overactive bladder. A recent Turkish study of 90 female patients found that both acupuncture and anticholinergic drug treatment were better than placebo and therefore concluded that acupuncture should be considered when drugs were contraindicated.

(Acupuncture versus Solifenacin for Treatment of Overactive Bladder and Its Correlation with Urine Nerve Growth Factor Levels: A Randomized, Placebo-Controlled Clinical Trial. Urol Int. 2014 Jul 16. [Epub ahead of print]).

Liquorice inhibits mouth bacteria

Licorice has been used for 1800 years in a formula called Gan Cao Xie Xin Tang to help with mouth ulcers and other oral problems, now research has found that its main ingredient, licorice, is effective in killing two of the major bacterial species responsible for dental cavities and two species that promote periodontal disease.
  J Nat Prod 2011 Dec 27;74(12):2514-9).

Acupuncture as effective as conventional care for dry eyes

Chinese researchers compared 44 patients were divided into two groups; one received ten sessions of acupuncture, while the other received Artificial Tear Therapy (ATC) over a 21-day period. Three weeks after completion of treatment the reduction in symptoms for the acupuncture group was greater than the ATC group. (Clinical curative effect of acupuncture therapy on xerophthalmia. Am J Chin Med. 2010;38(4):651-9).

Novel Diabetes Hope Comes From Chinese Herbs

Emodin, a natural product that can be extracted from various Chinese herbs including Rheum palmatum and Polygonum cuspidatum, shows promise as an agent that could reduce the impact of type 2 diabetes. Findings published in this month’s edition of the British Journal of Pharmacology show that giving emodin to mice with diet-induced obesity lowered blood glucose and serum insulin, improved insulin resistance and lead to more healthy levels of lipid in the blood. It also decreased body weight and reduced central fat mass.
“If repeated in humans, all of these changes would be beneficial for people affected by type 2 diabetes or other metabolic diseases associated with insulin resistance,” says lead author Dr Ying Leng, who works in the Shanghai Institute of Materia Medica, Chinese Academy of Science, Shanghai, China.

Emodin, a natural product, selectively inhibits 11β-hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase type 1 and ameliorates metabolic disorder in diet-induced obese mice. Ying Feng, Su-ling Huang, Wei Dou, Song Zhang, Jun-hua Chen, Yu Shen, Jian-hua Shen, Ying Leng. British Journal of Pharmacology. 2010; 161: 113-126.

Acupuncture more effective than drug therapy at preventing hot flushes in breast cancer patients

An American study randomly assigned fifty breast cancer patients who were receiving long term anti-oestrogen therapy to treatment with acupuncture or venlafaxine. Both groups experienced significant improvements in hot flushes and other symptoms. After treatment the acupuncture groups benefits remained whist the drug group's hot flushes returned. Some of the acupuncture group had an improvement in sex drive and most reported improvements in energy and sense of well being.

(Acupuncture versus venlafaxine for the management of vasomotor symptoms in patients with hormone receptor-positive breast cancer: a randomized controlled trial. J Clin Oncol. 2010 Feb 1;28(4):634-40).

Chinese Medicine and Rheumatoid Arthritis

Traditional Chinese medicine in the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis: a general review.

Rheumatoid arthritis (RA) is difficult to cure. Many methods have been used for its treatment, among which traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) has been considered as an important strategy. All of the three parts of TCM: Chinese herbs, acupuncture, and massage have been reported with varying degrees of therapeutic effects on RA. Also the mechanism exploration is under process. Many effective ingredients of anti-rheumatic Chinese herbs have been found to inhibit RA development and some of the effective ingredients have been verified. Furthermore, greatly enhanced life quality of RA patients was obtained using acupuncture and massage to relieve pain, expand joint motion and modulate emotion which mainly correlated with the possible modulation of immune system, nerve system, endocrine system, etc.

Rheumatol Int. 2010 Mar 5;

Authors: Zhang P, Li J, Han Y, Wei Yu X, Qin L

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