Acupuncture found to reduce nerve sensitivity
09/10/2019 // Michelle Simmons // Views

Acupuncture is a traditional Chinese medicinal practice that has been used for centuries, even today. In a study published in the journal Acupuncture in Medicine, acupuncture was found to reduce the sensitivity of the median nerve.

Animal studies show that acupuncture can reduce mechanosensitivity of peripheral nerves. In this study, researchers from the Polytechnic Institute of Leiria (Instituto Politecnico de Leiria) and the University of Porto (Universidade do Porto) in Portugal investigated whether acupuncture would exhibit the same effect in humans. Mechanosensitivity of the nervous system is a normal protective mechanism that enables the nerves to respond to mechanical stresses imposed upon them during movement.

Thirty-one individuals participated in this study.  They received acupuncture either on the LU5 acupuncture point or PC5 acupuncture point. The LU5 acupuncture point is the local point for the elbow, while PC5 is located on the flexor aspect of the forearm.

The researchers measured the participants’ mechanosensitivity of the median nerve by the elbow extension range-of-motion (EE–ROM) at pain onset and maximum tolerance during the upper limb neurodynamic test 1 (ULNT1). In addition, they examined the effects of two different acupuncture points – LU5 and PC5 – in ULNT1 responses.

The results revealed that after acupuncture, the mean EE–ROM at pain onset and maximum tolerance increased with no differences between the LU5 and PC5 groups. Taken together, acupuncture immediately reduces the mechanosensitivity of the median nerve reduced as seen in the increase in EE–ROM during the ULNT1.


Acupuncture is often used to relieve pain and ease discomfort. This technique uses thin needles that are inserted into the body’s acupuncture points to improve the flow of energy within. This stimulates the body’s healing abilities. Many people with nerve problems turn to acupuncture as it stimulates blood flow to restore nerve damage. As a result, endorphins, which are the body’s natural painkillers, are released in the muscles, spine, and brain to change the body’s response to pain.  (Related: Can acupuncture be used to treat peripheral neuropathy?)

Other health benefits of acupuncture

Acupuncture has a lot more benefits to offer aside from stimulating the nervous system. Here are more reasons why you should try acupuncture:

It improves memory and reduces anxiety – If you need a brain boost, try acupuncture. Acupuncture boosts memory and reduces anxiety, according to a study published in the Journal of Acupuncture and Meridian Studies. You will be able to experience these amazing benefits after the first session and with regular treatments.

It relieves symptoms of premenstrual syndrome (PMS) – Women may reduce PMS symptoms by getting acupuncture treatments beforehand. A study published in the journal BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine shows that women who received acupuncture, as well as other herbal medicines, experienced as much as 50 percent reduction in PMS symptoms than the initial state. Acupuncture is considered safe because there were no reports of major adverse events.

It helps you get a good night’s sleep – If you’re having trouble sleeping, getting regular acupuncture treatment may help. A study in the Journal of Traditional Chinese Medicine showed that regular acupuncture effectively treats chronic insomnia as it can calm the mind and body, leading to better sleep.

It keeps your skin healthy – Acupuncture enthusiasts also report that acupuncture has skin health benefits. It can reduce the appearance of wrinkles, activate sagging facial muscles, and increase collagen production, according to a survey in the Journal of Traditional Chinese Medicine.

It relieves pain – Numerous studies suggested that acupuncture may relieve various types of pain, including low back pain, neck pain, osteoarthritis or knee pain. In addition, it may also decrease the frequency of tension headaches and even prevent migraine.

Read more articles on traditional healing techniques like acupuncture at

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