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Acupuncture Quiets Tinnitus

Acupuncture alleviates tinnitus. Researchers from the Central Hospital of Otolaryngology and Head and Neck Surgery in Chaoyang City investigated the efficacy of acupuncture for the treatment of tinnitus associated with cervical disorders. The data demonstrates that one standard acupuncture point prescription is 50% effective and a specialized acupuncture point prescription has an 80% total effective rate.

Two separate groups were tested with the acupuncture point prescriptions. Both groups had an acupuncture needle retention time of thirty minutes. Acupuncture was conducted once per day for a grand total of eighteen acupuncture treatments. The first set of acupuncture points outperformed the second set by 30% with a total effective rate of 80%.

Song et al. had similar findings in their research. Song et al. studied cases of intractable tinnitus treated with acupuncture and ginger moxibustion. The participants did not have cervical disorders as in Central Hospital of Otolaryngology and Head and Neck Surgery research. Physical examinations ruled out physical dysfunction of the auricle and middle ear, acoustic neuroma, sclerosis, head injuries, anemia, diabetes, hypothyroidism, hypoglycemia, autoimmune disease, and vascular spastic diseases. Patients with the aforementioned conditions were excluded from the study.

The total effective rate was 91%. All patients had tinnitus for a duration between four months and eleven years. Acupuncture was applied to the following protocolized set of acupoints:

  • TB17 (Yifeng)

  • GB2 (Tinghui)

  • SJ21 (Ermen)

  • SI19 (Tinggong)

  • LU7 (Lieque)

  • GB43 (Xiaxi)

  • SJ3 (Zhongzhu)

  • LR3 (Taichong)

  • GB40 (Qiuxu)

Acupuncture points TB17, GB2, and SJ21 were needled unilaterally on the affected side. If the tinnitus was unilateral, the patient rested on one side. For bilateral tinnitus, the patients rested in a supine position. Manual acupuncture stimulation was employed to elicit deqi. Electroacupuncture was applied to local ear acupoints using a continuous wave. Total needle retention time was 30 minutes. Acupuncture treatments were administered once per day for ten days.

Ginger moxibustion was applied along with the acupuncture point prescription. Ginger was sliced into 1 cm thick cubes, each with a small needle-punctured hole in the center. A mound of moxa was placed on the ginger and ignited. The ginger was placed on the outer auricle region.

A total of 64.17% patients fully recovered, 14.71% had significant improvements, 11.76% had slight improvements, and 8.82% had no improvements. The total effective rate was 91.18%. The researchers concluded that acupuncture combined with ginger moxibustion is effective for the treatment of intractable tinnitus.

The researchers note that widespread adoption of this clinical treatment protocol is warranted based on the significant rate of positive patient outcomes.

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