||OBJECTIVE: To observe the effect of electroacupuncture (EA) on force-displacement value (FDV) of muscle state and the temperature index of infrared thermogram in patients with acute lumbar muscle sprain. METHODS: Patients with acute lumbar muscle sprain were randomly divided into a medication group and an EA group. The medication group (n = 60) were treated with diclofenac sodium dual release enteric-coated capsules, 75 mg per day for 7 days. The EA group (n = 60) received EA at bilateral Houxi (SI 3), Jiaji (EX-B2), and Ashi points, at 20-30 mm depth and 10-25 Hz frequency for 20 min daily for 7 days. Muscle states were determined by measuring FDVs of the bilateral lumbar muscle with a Myotonometer fast muscle state detector. The temperature index of the lumbar skin was measured before and after treatment with a Fluke Ti30 non-refrigerated focal plane infrared thermal imaging detector. RESULTS: There were no significant pre-treatment differences between the medication group and the EA group in mean FDV (P = 0.052) or temperature index of the lumbar skin (P = 0.25). The cure rate was 63.3% in the EA group and 53.3% in the medication group. The total efficacy in the EA group (93.3 %) was not significantly different from that in the medication group (86.6 %, P = 0.204). After treatment, the mean FDV of the lumbar muscle significantly increased in both groups (P < 0.05 for both groups); the FDV increase in the EA group was significantly higher than in the medication group (P = 0.015). The temperature index was also significantly increased in both groups (P < 0.05 for both groups); the infrared thermogram in the EA group indicated significantly greater recovery compared to the medication group (P = 0.026). CONCLUSION: Both EA and diclofenac sodium markedly improved acute lumbar sprain, but EA better improved the rehabilitation and regeneration of FDVs and temperature index of infrared thermogram of the muscle.