Medical Research

Acupuncture's Effects on Blood Pressure and Cardiovascular System: A Review

Kristen Sparrow • October 21, 2019

Ancient Medicine Made Modern

This is the abstract from a chapter in a book that I bought online.  I would love to link to the whole thing for you, but I’m sure that would be against all kinds of copyrights etc…  I spoke with Longhurst years ago at a conference where I presented a poster.  He insisted that electroacupuncture is required for there to be a physiological effect on sympathoinhibition.   I haven’t found that to necessarily be the case.  I was amazed to see that they recognize the role of responders and non responders in this article.  That was one small piece of the acupuncture puzzle I added way back when, that responders showed a relaxation response to treatment where non-responders did not.
Acupuncture Cardiovascular Regulation:
Translational, Clinical Studies
and Underlying Mechanisms
Stephanie C. Tjen-A-Looi, Peng Li, John C. Longhurst and Shaista Malik
Abstract Mechanisms associated with the effects of acupuncture on cardiovascular
health have been investigated in the recent decades.Although the precise mechanisms
are yet unclear, a list of finding has been reported on acupuncture induced sympatho
inhibition (Longhurst and Tjen-A-looi 2013) to support the promising effects of this
therapy on cardiac and cerebral vascular diseases aggravated by hypertension. The
common underlying mechanism, in part, relates to sympathoexcitation that occurs for
instance with dietary sodium, physical and emotional stress and aberrant autonomic
neuronal activity electroacupuncture (EA). We have observed that the acupuncture
outcomes depend on well-defined specific EA treatment are influenced by responders
and non-responders. Acupuncture may also modify ischemia in the heart and
brain through angiogenesis and nerve fiber regeneration. Decreasing peak blood pressure
with acupuncture could prevent these types of ischemia leading to myocardial
ischemia and stroke. Alongside reduction in sympathoexcitation, acupuncture also
decreases parasympathoexcitation during neurogenic syncope. Thus acupuncture has
the capability to influence the cardiovascular function in patients with disease that
are contributed by altered autonomic nervous system regulation, for example hypertension
and hypotension.