24. September 2015 · Comments Off · Categories: Acupuncture, Dry Eyes

Chinese researchers have found that acupuncture can result in objectively measurable improvements of tear film quantity in patients with certain types of dry eye. A total of 108 dry eye patients were randomised to receive treatment with either acupuncture or artificial tears. Each group was divided into three subgroups based on subtype of dry eye: lipid tear deficiency (LTD), Sjogren syndrome dry eye (SSDE) and non-Sjogren syndrome dry eye (Non-SSDE). The acupoints used included Jingming BL-1, Zanzhu BL-2, Yangbai GB-14, Sizhukong SJ-23, Taiyang M-HN-9, Sibai. ST-2, Hegu L.I.-4, Taichong LIV-3, Guangming GB-37, Sanyinjiao SP-6 and Fengchi GB-20. After four-weeks of treatment, compared with both baseline measurements and control groups, tear meniscus parameters (quantitative measurements of tear film quantity) were found to have increased significantly in the acupuncture group for the LTD and Non-SSDE subgroups, but not for the SSDE subgroup. (Fourier-domain optical coherence tomography for monitoring the lower tear meniscus in dry eye after acupuncture treatment. Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2015;2015:492150. Epub 2015 Feb 18).

 Acupuncture is as effective as artificial tear therapy (ATC) at reducing the symptoms of xerophthalmia (dry eyes), and the effects of acupuncture last longer. Chinese researchers compared 44 patients who were divided into two groups; one received ten sessions of acupuncture, while the other received ATC over a 21-day period. One hour after treatment, no significant difference in symptom scores could be found between the two groups. Three weeks after completion of treatment, however, the reduction in symptom scores for the acupuncture group was significantly greater than that of the ATC group. (Clinical curative effect of acupuncture therapy on xerophthalmia. Am J Chin Med. 2010;38(4):651-9).