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Journal of Chinese Integrative Medicine ›› 2012, Vol. 10 ›› Issue (4): 362-368.doi: 10.3736/jcim20120402

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High-tech acupuncture made in Austria — cerebral circulation

Gerhard Litscher()   

  1. Stronach Research Unit for Complementary and Integrative Laser Medicine, Research Unit of Biomedical Engineering in Anesthesia and Intensive Care Medicine, and TCM Research Center Graz, Medical University of Graz, Graz, Austria
  • Received:2012-01-23 Accepted:2012-02-09 Online:2012-04-20 Published:2018-04-15

It is little known that Austria has tradition in research in Chinese integrative medicine, especially traditional Chinese medicine. For more than 15 years, the research concerning high-tech acupuncture has been playing an important role at the Medical University of Graz, Austria. Within this review article, a short summary concerning high-tech acupuncture and cerebral circulation, and transcranial Doppler (TCD) sonography is presented. TCD has been extensively used in various basic and clinical situations, and in the last decade has established its role also as a tool of investigating the effects of various acupuncture methods. Based on the Doppler principle, it uses ultrasound waves to insonate the blood vessels supplying the brain and to obtain stimulation-induced changes of hemodynamic information. The purpose of this review is to present the basic concepts of TCD technique in relation to acupuncture research, and the specific effects on cerebral hemodynamics caused by acupuncture stimulation.

Key words: laser acupuncture, Austria, cerebrovascular circulation, ultrasonography, blood flow velocity, laser-doppler flowmetry, review

Figure 1

Evidence of acupuncture effects from multidirectional transcranial ultrasound Doppler sonography Specific acupuncture points modulate blood flow velocity in specific brain arteries. ACA: anterior cerebral artery; BA: basilar artery; PCA: posterior cerebral artery; OA: ophthalmic artery; STA: supratrochlear artery; MCA: middle cerebral artery."

Figure 2

“Windows to the brain” for transcranial ultrasound investigations Transorbital (A and C), transtemporal (B left and C right) and transnuchal (B right). The probe holder constructions were developed at the Traditional Chinese Medicine Research Center in Graz, Austria."

Figure 3

Helmet construction Equipment for the first proof of changes in cerebral circulation caused by acupuncture."

Figure 4

Changes in blood flow velocity after laser acupuncture Example of the on/off-effect on mean blood flow velocity at the beginning and end of violet laser acupuncture in a healthy female volunteer."

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