Research Shows Stronger Tendon from Acupuncture For Achilles Rupture.

By Chad Dupuis
Tagged in Acupuncture and Research

Many weekend athletes, particularly those in the 35-50 age range, may experience a rupture of the achilles tendon.  While it can truly happen to anyone at anytime, those with more sporadic exercise outputs and varying rates of condition are more likely to experience a rupture.  

Besides a full rupture, there are a host of other issues that can happen in the calf/ankle area such as tendinosis, paratenonitis and various tears to the surrounding muscle and tissue.  Within Chinese Medicine there is a long history of treating trauma related injuries particularly with the overlapping between it and the martial arts.

In a recent study, Japanese researchers evaluated the effectiveness of electroacupuncture on the rate of healing for an achilles tendon rupture.  They used a rat model - dividing 90 Wistar rats into EA, manual or control groups.  Those in the electroacupuncture group received EA daily for 7-10 days depending on the preparation time.  After treatment the achilles tendon tissue was sampled to note changes on a cellular level.

Researchers used total cell counts, and stains for see positive growth factor-β1 (TGF-β1), basic fibroblast growth factor (b-FGF), and tension test to measure maximum breaking strength of the repaired tendon following 10 days of treatment.

Researchers found significantly positive changes in cell counts and b-FGF in the EA group as well as strong expression of TGF-β1 and a significantly higher breaking strength 10 days out.  They conclude that EA "may be a useful method for promoting tendon repair."

In clinical experience acupuncture, along with tuina (medical massage) and in some cases oral and/or external herbal treatment can provide valuable treatment to help people heal more completely at a faster rate than the normal western rest, ice and anti-inflammatory protocols, but further comparative studies would need to be performed.



Research Shows Stronger Tendon from Acupuncture For Achilles Rupture.

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Authored by: Chad Dupuis on 2 November 2014

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