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Addressing The Symptoms Of Irritable Bowel Syndrome (IBS) Using Moxibustion Therapy

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Within Chinese Medicine circles, moxibustion in Jacksonville is an often used treatment mainly used to eliminate ailments and strengthen the body. In Shanghai, Fudan University researchers recently performed an animal experiment to clarify the effects of moxibustion on the colon.

There are two kinds of moxibustion commonly administered on humans: direct and indirect moxibustion. In this animal experiment, the indirect method using a moxa roll was used. The rats used in the study have developed CVH or chronic visceral hypersensitivity, a disease associated with IBS or Irritable Bowel Syndrome and affiliated symptoms in humans. For a period of seven days, thirty minutes a day, moxibustion was used on two bilateral acupuncture points – ST 25 (intestinal/digestive problems) and ST 37 (more acute intestinal/digestive conditions). To help in the experiment, a control group left untreated was included.

Evaluation was conducted and the CRH (hypothalamic corticotropin-relasing hormone) levels of mRNA and the rates of abdominal withdrawal reflex were analyzed. Among humans, an important factor in IBS is the Corticotropin-releasing hormone,which is associated with decreased motility of the colon under stress.

Researchers discovered that moxibustion led to a substantial reduction of CRH mRNA expression to normal levels and a decrease in the sensitivity of the colon.

Since it is easy to perform and considered safe to use, moxibustion can be used as a home/self-help remedy. These kinds of research works are important in order to understand better the internal functions of the therapy. A study similar to the aforementioned experiment have witnessed beneficial effects with the same results as electro-acupuncture therapy. More studies are recommended to further assess whether both therapies used in a human model would be better than a single therapy.

Written by Valerie

March 12th, 2019 at 12:55 pm

Acupuncture And Moxibustion For Healing The Various Ailing Areas Of The Human Body

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Chinese medicine can involve acupressure, moxibustion, herbal medicine and acupuncture. These modalities are meant to reinstall the flow of energy in the pathways that make up our qi which is the energy or vital force of the body. The human body has 14 energy channels, called Meridians that comprise the life force of the body, which is the essence of life. When we are healthy, energy steadily flows through these meridians. We experience sickness, pain, and symptoms of illnesses when there is a blockage in the flow in one or more of these meridians. The fields of energy that circulate through every layer of our body can be controlled through touch, pressure, electrical stimulation, needle punctures, and other ways so that the movement flow of energy can be restored in the blocked meridians. There are acupuncture points along these Meridians, which are found in our ears, feet, skin, and muscles, and are close enough to the body surface to control for the process of healing.

Acupuncture in Cleveland

Acupuncture is one such technique to exploit the Acupuncture Points (acupoints). Acupuncture is a method that involves the placement of slender needles into the skin along the acupoints of Meridians. Despite the lack of evidence of the existence of these energy channels, there are resources available that delineate the paths these meridians take within our body and where the acupoints exactly are. Each of these channels, fortunately, has its own acupoints on the surface of the skin to give us the means to heal all joints, organ systems, and other components of our musculoskeletal system. These sources of information can be found in pictures, books, diagrams and illustrations.

The needles used in acupuncture have a tiny diameter and are made of stainless steel, as opposed to hypodermic needles used to draw blood which are much larger. Acupuncture needles are also hollow; hypodermic needles are solid. The needles are inserted into the skin about an inch to four inches deep. A normal treatment session may necessitate the use of five to fifteen needles.

Acupuncturists recommend a series of treatments to build up a cumulative effect for it to work in the relief of stress and pain. This implies that as the treatments continue, the benefits of the treatment will increase and last longer with each additional session.

Some doctors have integrated conventional acupuncture procedures in order to boost the results of their treatment, as well as to increase the time intervals that patients undergo without experiencing relapses of symptoms of disease or pain. Doctors have experimented with both new and old technologies and medicines in order to augment the benefits of their therapies.

Electro-acupuncture is an updated version of traditional acupuncture whereby an electric current is transported to Acupuncture needles. The current settings that apparently can provide the best outcomes are the high-intensity, low-frequency currents. They are highly likely to provide the body with more benefits and comfort, and endow benefits that persist long after the session is over. The high-intensity low-frequency currents are the settings that tend to generate a cumulative effect for the relief of pain. The acupuncturist inserting the needles to the acupoints has control over the current’s intensity and frequency.

PENS Acupuncture is another modern form of acupuncture. It entails the attachment of electrodes to acupuncture needles. Electricity is then sent to the needles inserted in the body.


Moxibustion is a healing method whereby heat from flaming herbs is directly applied over each acupoint during a treatment session. This branch of Chinese medicine involves the treatment of acupoints along the Meridians whereby the flow of energy is believed to be obstructed. The acupoints do not have to be stimulated manually for the meridians to be affected. In certain instances, nutritional and herbal therapies can work as well. In moxibustion therapy, a plant known as mugwort or moxa is lit over acupoints on the head acupuncture needles that are inserted in the body. The lit moxa has healing properties believed to promote healing by reinvigorating the flow of qi and increasing the flow of blood.

There are two types of moxibustion: indirect and direct. In Indirect moxibustion, the end of a moxa stick is lit, and then placed near the acupoint for many seconds.

In the direct method, a small cone-shaped moxa is directly placed on the acupuncture point. There are two sub-classifications of this treatment: non-scarring and scarring.

The non-scarring version involves igniting and placing the moxa directly on then and then quickly removed before it burns the skin. The scarring version involves placing a piece of moxa on the skin and then setting it on fire.

Written by Valerie

February 12th, 2019 at 11:05 am

Posted in Acupuncture

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Studies Reveal Moxibustion-Acupuncture’s Effectiveness In Treating Cervical Spondylosis

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As an alternative therapy, acupuncture has long been quite a popular way to relieve neck pain; on the other hand, moxibustion acupuncture may be a new and a bit scary for even acupuncture enthusiasts. Some people may seem that the thought of setting fire to a substance (moxa) at the top end of an acupuncture needle may seem like a step too far, so why is this multi-millennia old technique still practiced? More importantly, can moxibustion acupuncture work in treating neck pain?

A component of an ancient Oriental medical system known as traditional Chinese medicine (TCM), moxibustion is a healing method that usually involves the use of an herb widely known for its healing qualities, mugwort. The truth is acupuncture’s Chinese character actually translates to acupuncture-moxibustion, as this therapy was designed to stimulate energy (qi), boost the blood, and support overall wellbeing and health.

A common practice to stimulate the uterus, moxibustion acupuncture is also used to rectify other issues associated with the female reproductive system such as menstrual cramping and breech births. In recent years, it has likewise been researched to ascertain the possible risks and benefits for neck pain and other physical conditions.

Direct and Indirect Moxibustion Acupuncture

In Western cultures, direct moxibustion is rarely practiced as there is a danger of scarring and blisters. Direct moxibustion entails the placing of a small amount of mugwort, that’s converted into moxa, on top of an acupuncture point, lit up, and allowed to burn out. Practitioners of this procedure can also take out the moxa before it completely burns out, thereby limiting any skin burning. If the moxa is removed at the right time scarring, blistering, and pain could be avoided. Instead, a pleasurable feeling of heat should penetrate the skin and help release tension and pain.

Indirect moxibustion is the more preferred moxibustion procedure used in Western acupuncture treatments. The procedure entails the application of moxa to the top end of an acupuncture needle that has been inserted into an acupoint. The moxa is then set on fire in order to warm the needle. After the completion of the treatment, the burning moxa is put out and the needle removed. One other type of indirect moxibustion involves the burning of a moxa stick that’s held for a few minutes very near the targeted acupoint until the skin turns red. This type of moxibustion and the indirect form are both deemed to pose a much lower risk of burning or pain compared to direct moxibustion.

When Should Be Moxibustion Used?

Based on TCM principles, moxibustion acupuncture should only be used for stagnant or cold conditions and not for issues where there is too much heat. In the treatment of neck pain, this therapy may be useful for people whose pain is considered to be the result of blocked qi (energy), tension, weak blood flow, and not for inflammatory conditions.

As usual, any person performing moxibustion acupuncture or any alternative treatment for neck pain should have undergone proper education. In moxibustion acupuncture, the practitioner should hold a traditional Chinese medicine degree or should be a qualified acupuncturist. In the US, you could only practice moxibustion if you have an acupuncture license. If your patient has a respiratory condition, the practitioner can use smokeless moxa sticks as the odor and smoke a burning moxa can be overwhelming.

Can Neck Pain Be Cured With Moxibustion Acupuncture?

A few years ago a study was published that specifically dealt with the use of moxibustion acupuncture in the treatment of neck pain due to arthritis in the neck (or cervical spondylosis). The 145 subjects who participated in the study were divided into three groups in this randomized clinical trial: 48 subjects in the moxibustion group, 48 subjects in the acupuncture group, and 49 subjects in the acupuncture-moxibustion group.

All subjects were treated using the TE 3 (Shongshu), Sl 15 (Chiangshongshu), GV 14 (Dashui), and Extra (Bailao) acupoints. For the moxibustion group, at each of these acupoints, three cones and seed-size moxa were applied. Twenty minute needling session in all of these acupoints was administered in the acupuncture group. Both protocols were utilized for the combination group.

All subjects were treated in the prescribed manner once every three days and within four weeks, they should have undergone 10 treatments. Three months later, they were required to undergo a follow-up period. Evaluations were done using the MPQ (McGill Pain Questionnaire) and NPQ (Northwick Park Pain Questionnaire).

Compared to baseline, outcomes revealed that after three months, all three groups had lower MPQ and NPQ scores; however the group that was treated with acupuncture-moxibustion had lower scores compared to the groups treated with either moxibustion or acupuncture alone. There was a significant difference in the efficacy of the treatment in all three groups, although it was seen that all of them experienced substantial alleviation of pain caused by cervical spondylosis.

Neck Pain Treatment Using Direct Moxibustion

In another published study in recent years, the efficacy of moxibustion on treatment of cervical spondylosis of the vertebral artery was tested and observed. The study involved the participation of 60 patients who were assigned randomly to a group. One group was treated with a regular dosage of moxa and the other group received a saturated dosage of moxa. Two acupoints wherein heat sensitivity (thermo-sensitization) was considered to be strongest were selected for moxibustion treatment. In the saturated treatment group, moxibustion time was gauged by the loss of heat sensitivity, while in the regular dose group a 15 minute standard therapy was administered on each acupoint. Both groups during the first four days were given a couple of treatments each day, then for the next 10 days, treatments were given once a day.

The treatment’s clinical efficacy, and the patients’ function and symptoms were documented prior to and post treatments as well on the follow-up treatment six months later. The group that received regular moxa dosage experienced symptomatic relief in 26.7 percent and 30 percent of the patients after treatment and after six months, respectively while for the saturated moxa treatment group, the efficacy rate was shown to be 56.7 percent post treatment and 60 percent six months post treatment. When it came to function and clinical symptoms, both groups experienced improvements post treatment and at follow-up, although, much greater improvement was shown in the saturated moxa group.

Current Research Constraints

All the above-mentioned studies indicate the inherent benefits of moxibustion acupuncture for relief of neck pain due to arthritis, but forethought is in order as those researches are not placebo-controlled (that could be performed with moxibustion or needling of non-acupoints) and are isolated. Additional studies are required to ascertain if the moxibustion acupuncture benefits can be applied to other issues that can result in neck pain, and whether a placebo effect is arising there. Neck pain direct moxibustion acupuncture treatment can also result in complications and long term or even permanent skin damage and so should only be performed by an experienced and qualified practitioner.

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Written by Valerie

November 21st, 2017 at 6:04 am