Medical Research

Acupuncture and HRV: Use Caution Drawing Conclusions Norwegian group

Kristen Sparrow • May 30, 2012

I’ve been busy over the holiday weekend writing up data for publication and have referred to this paper often and realized that I hadn’t “added it to the archives”.  This is a paper out of Norway and the authors offer criticisms and guidelines in the use of HRV and acupuncture.  (I still get a kick out of even typing that since I never realized when I started applying HRV to acupuncture, it would become so popular that these sorts of provisos would be necessary.)

letter about HRV and acupuncture

Acupuncture and heart rate variability

However, it is yet too early to close down the use of HRV in acupuncture research on the autonomic nervous system. However, one should be careful in extrapolating the results from spectral indices of HRV to conclusions about autonomic regulation. The use of spectral indices of HRV may not refl ect autonomic control fully, may be divorced from underlying physiology, and therefore, may lead to erroneous conclusions. (Mis)use of a method in other publications should not be a justifi cation of its repeated use.