Brain connectivity, which is altered in patients with functional dyspepsia (FD), appears to become more like that of healthy controls following acupuncture treatment. Chinese researchers compared data from eight FD patients with ten healthy controls. Two main acupoints, Zusanli ST-36 and Taixi KID-3, were used, with additional acupoints including Zulinqi GB-41, Neiguan P-6 and Shenmen HE-7 employed based on symptom pattern. Treatment was implemented once every other day, three to four times a week, for one month. Patients showed significant improvements in FD signs and symptoms after acupuncture treatment. The investigators also identified sub-portions of brain networks that had shown reduced connectivity in FD patients before treatment, showed significant improvement after acupuncture in almost all cases. The authors conclude that the relief of gastrointestinal signs and symptoms by acupuncture is likely due to the normalisation of disturbances in the brain-gut axis.
Brain-Gut Axis Modulation of Acupuncture in Functional Dyspepsia: A Preliminary Resting-State fcMRI Study.
Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2015;2015:860463.