Electro-acupuncture at the Zusanli, Yanglingquan, and Kunlun points does not reduce anesthetic requirement



Electro-acupuncture at the Zusanli, Yanglingquan, and Kunlun points does not reduce anesthetic requirement


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We tested the hypothesis that electro-acupuncture at the Zusanli, Yanglingquan, and Kunlun acupuncture points on the legs decreases anesthetic requirement. Fourteen young, healthy volunteers were anesthetized with desflurane on two separate days. Needle electrodes were positioned at the three acupuncture points thought to produce a generalized sedative and analgesic effect. Needles were percutaneously placed on treatment days; on control days, they were insulated and taped near the insertion points. The electrodes were stimulated on the treatment day. Stimulation consisted of 2-Hz and 100-Hz currents alternated at 2-s intervals. When the end-tidal desflurane concentration of 5.5% was stable for 15 min, noxious electrical stimuli were administered via 25-gauge needles on both thighs (70 mA at 100 Hz for 10 s). Desflurane concentration was increased 0.5% when movement occurred and decreased 0.5% when it did not. An investigator, blinded to treatment, determined movement. These up-and-down sequences were continued until volunteers crossed from movement to no movement four times. A logistic regression determined the partial pressure of desflurane that produced a 50% likelihood of movement in response to noxious stimulation and consequently identified the minimum alveolar anesthetic concentration equivalent for desflurane. There was no significant difference in minimum alveolar anesthetic concentration equivalents between the electro-acupuncture (4.6% +/- 0.6%, mean +/- SD) and control (4.6% +/- 0.8%) days (P = 0.8). These data provided an 80% power for detecting a difference of 0.35 volume-percent between the groups. IMPLICATIONS: Electro-stimulation of three general acupuncture points on the leg did not reduce desflurane requirements. This type of acupuncture is thus unlikely to facilitate general anesthesia or decrease the need for anesthetic drugs.



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1 Day

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