Hypertension is classified as dizziness or headache in traditional Chinese medicine. Hypertension is caused by the imbalance of body’s yin and yang. It is also caused by the functional disorder of Zang-Fu (anatomical) organs, qi and blood circulation. Acupuncture usually helps regulate qi and blood, and adjust Zang-Fu functions. Modern studies have shown that acupuncture plays a regulatory role in vegetative nervous function including cardiovascular function, or strengthening the body’s physical mechanism. With no side effects and as a useful no-drug therapeutic method, acupuncture has proved effective in treating hypertension.
Huanqiu Traditional Chinese Medicine (TCM) Hospital in China carried out a study to assess how effective is acupuncture in treating hypertension. It took a sample of 70 patients suffering from hypertension, 43 were male and 27 female, two patients were less than 38 years of age; 14 were in the age group of 40-49; 24 were in the 50-59 years age bracket, and 30 were above 60 years of age. The span of illness varied from 25 days to 15 years.
Acupuncture points were selected and needled. Needles were retained for half an hour. The treatment was given once a day. One therapeutic course comprises ten treatments.
Cure: Symptoms like headache and dizziness disappear, and blood pressure drops to within a normal range. A follow-up period of 6 months shows that the therapeutic effect is stable.
Excellent: Symptoms like headache and dizziness vanish and the blood pressure drops to a normal level. However, there is a possibility of a relapse within 6 months requiring further treatment.
Effective: Symptoms are less after the treatment; blood pressure varies between the normal and the critical hypertension level.
Failure: The symptoms may be less after the treatment, but the blood pressure remains high or above the normal range.
All 70 patients were under observation for three years. Thirty-three were cured, 26 obtained excellent therapeutic effect, six were effective, and five failed. The total therapeutic effective rate reached 90 per cent. Of the 33 cured cases, hypertension relapsed with four, but were cured after further treatment.
A 56 year old male patient, visited the hospital, complaining of headache, dizziness and distending pain in the head, bitterness in the mouth and dry throat complicated by deafness and tinnitus. The symptoms were frequently sporadic. His blood and urine samples were tested and his chest X-rayed, with no abnormalities found. His case was diagnosed as hypertension of degree I. Treatment with traditional herbal and modern medicines showed no effect. His blood pressure was 200/160 mm Hg with exaggerated heart beat. Acupuncture points were selected and was given treatment once daily and after two treatments the patient began to feel better. After one therapeutic course ( of 10 treatments), there were no longer any subjective symptoms. Blood pressure was 140/90 mm Hg. The patient was advised to avoid eating pungent food and getting upset. He was completely cured after two therapeutic courses.
Follow-up observations for two years subsequent to the treatment showed no relapse whatsoever.