A research team from China reported recently that acupuncture combined with Tuina could significantly increase the therapeutic effect of acupuncture in migraine treatment.A prospective, randomized controlled assessor-blind clinical trial was performed between January 2017 and May 2018, and 135 patients were assigned into group A:acupuncture +Tuina (A),Group B: only acupuncture, and Group C:control with flunarizine hydrochloride), each with 45 patients. Treatments were performed for 12 weeks and a 4-week follow-up. Frequency of attacks, severity of pain, duration of migraine, associated symptoms, patient-reported outcome (PRO) scores, and frequency of analgesic consumption were assessed. Results: The total effective rate was 95.6, 88.9, and 75.6% for group A, B, and C, respectively, with a significant reduction in attack frequency, severity of pain, duration of migraine, and associated symptoms at post-treatment and follow-up compared to pre-treatment. The PRO scores and frequency of analgesic consumption were significantly improved (group A, p < 0.01; groups B and C,p < 0.05). The differences in pre-/post-treatment and in pre-treatment/follow-up in groups A and B were significantly improved compared to group C (A vs. C, p < 0.01; B vs. C, A vs. B, p < 0.05). No significant adverse events occurred.

Acupuncture

(1) main points: Yintang, ST8, Taiyang, GB8, GB20, DU20, GB11

(2) modification

  • Qi and blood deficiency: LI4, DU23, ST36, SP6
  • Damp/phlegm: RN12, ST40, SP9
  • Hyperactive Liver Yang: LR3, KI3, GB43
  • Blood stasis: PC6, SP10, BL17

Acupuncture treatment was performed twice a week in the first 4 weeks, once a week during weeks 5-8, and once every 14 days during weeks 9-12.

Tuina Treatment

Tuina was performed after acupuncture treatment. With the patient in sitting position, Tuina was performed along the 7 lines from Yintang to DU16, BL2 to BL10, Yuyang to GB20, SJ23 to GB12, with both hands applying pushing, rubbing, pressing or kneading for 10 min.

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Reference

Nie L, Cheng J, Wen Y, Li J. The Effectiveness of Acupuncture Combined with Tuina Therapy in Patients with Migraine. Complementary Medicine Research. 2019;26(3):180-92.

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