Japanese Acupuncture and Moxibustion (Online)
JAM  2017;Vol.13(1):9-15
Effects of acupuncture on dementia
-A case series with a novel Sanjiao Acupuncture method-
NAKAMURA Masamichi1), HYODO Akira2), HAN Jingxing3), KAWANAMI Oichi4)
1)Tokyo Therapeutic Institute/ Department of Clinical Acupuncture and Moxibustion,
Meiji University of Integrative Medicine
2)GOTO College Traditional Chinese Medicine Institute
3)Ex-director, First Teaching Hospital of Tianjin University, China
4)President, Gerontology Research Association Japan/ Director, Shinjuku-Kampo Clinic
Abstract
[Objective] This study was aimed to explore the efficacy and usefulness of acupuncture which was technically defined by consistent manipulation on 9 needles at 6 acupoints in the body (Sanjiao method). The acupuncture treatment was done for patients with Alzhemier’s disease (AD) or vascular dementia (VaD), and the identical treatment was performed on a group of the elderly who had lifestyle related disease (LS-D) with no detectable dementia.
[Methods] Totally 56 patients agreed to participate in the study, including 18 with AD, 12 with VaD, and 26 with LS-D with no obvious dementia. Sanjiao acupuncture treatment was done once a week for 3 months totaling 12 times. The treatment effect was assessed by scores of mini-mental state examination (MMSE) and Nishimura Scale of Activities of Daily Living (N-ADL). Their posttreatment scores were statistically compared to their pretreatment ones. Text dwelling analysis was made by the key words collected by interviews done at occasions of acupuncture.
[Results] In total 56 patients, the mean scores of MMSE before the treatment (21.4±7.3) was significantly increased in the posttreatment (22.3±7.0) (p<0.01). Particularly, significant improvement was shown in patients with VaD (p<0.05) and LS-D (p<0.01), although the improvement tended to be limited in patients with AD and patients who required higher nursing care levels (≧3). The mean N-ADL scores in pretreatment stage (34.7±13.1) differed significantly from the mean posttreatment score (34.9±13.0) (p<0.01), showing favorable changes of the 56 patients. Physical, behavioral and psychological activities (BPSD) demonstrated by the text dwelling analysis were very well improved in each patient’s group after the treatments of the acupuncture.
[Conclusion] The novel acupuncture treatment showed significant improvement of N-ADL and amelioration of BPSD, which would contribute to have a higher quality of daily lives of the patients and would bring better QOL to the family and care-givers as well. It would be possible to delay or even prevent the transition of LS-D into dementia. Thus, this acupuncture method would help curtail excessive medical expense in the ageing society.