The Effects of Sa-Am Acupuncture Treatment on Respiratory Physiology Parameters in Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis Patients: A Pilot Study.

Author: Lee S, Kim S.
Affiliation: Department of Acupuncture & Moxibustion, Wonkwang University Korean Medical Hospital, 543-8 Juwol Dong, Nam-gu, Gwangju 503-310, Republic of Korea.
Conference/Journal: Evid Based Complement Alternat Med.
Date published: 2013
Other: Volume ID: 2013 , Pages: 506317 , Word Count: 195

Respiratory dysfunction and complications are the most common causes of death in amyotrophic lateral sclerosis. This is a pilot study to observe the changes in respiratory physiology parameters after Sa-am acupuncture treatment. Eighteen ALS patients received Sa-am acupuncture treatment twice a day for 5 days. The EtCO2, SpO2, RR, and pulse rate were measured for 15 min before and during treatment, using capnography and oximetry. Correlation of K-ALSFRS-R scores against measured parameters showed that patients who had high K-ALSFRS-R scores had greater changes in pulse rate after acupuncture stimulation; they also showed a decrease in EtCO2, RR, and pulse rate and an increase in SpO2. A comparison of the mean values of these different parameters before and after Sa-am acupuncture stimulation revealed statistically significant differences (P < 0.05) in SpO2 and pulse rate, but none in EtCO2 and RR. Sa-am acupuncture treatment on ALS patients seems to be more effective in the early stages of the disease. In light of increased SpO2 values, Sa-am acupuncture appears to have a greater effect on inspiration rather than on expiration. As a pilot study of acupuncture on ALS patients, this study could be used as a basis for future research.
PMID: 24101939