Thirty-two cases of trigeminal neuralgia treated with acupuncture plus traditional Chinese medicinals

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Thirty-two cases of trigeminal neuralgia treated with acupuncture plus traditional Chinese medicinals, by Zhengmei et al.

According to TCM theory trigeminal neuralgia is caused by pathogenic wind invading the head and face. While there is normally no pain between attacks, prolonged attacks may result in obstruction of the channels and collaterals, leading to lingering pain. Although conventional acupuncture is often unsuccessful in treating this disease, the authors chose a method of needling in which Taiyang (M-HN-9) was connected subcutaneously through to Jiache ST-6, ensuring the strong stimulation of several points with a single insertion. This gave a good result and they were able to report an overall success rate of 96.9%, compared to 89.7% in a control group who received carbamazepine. Both groups were statistically comparable in terms of age, number of attacks and which of the branches of the trigeminal nerve were involved. The treatment group was needled daily, with the needle retained for 30 minutes and dispersed every 10 minutes. Ten treatments constituted one course and there was a two day interval between courses. In addition, 20g of the following powdered herbs were given three times daily for 30 days: Chuan Xiong (Chuanxiong Rhizoma) 20g, Quan Xie (Scorpio) 10g, Wu Gong (Scolopendra) 6g and Bai Shao (Paeoniae Radix alba) 15g. These herbs were used to dredge the collaterals, remove stagnation and stop pain, subdue wind and nourish the blood.
JTCM December 2006

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Author Zhengmei et al
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