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Am J Chin Med. 2005;33(4):589-97.

A birdcage model for the Chinese meridian system: part III. Possible mechanism of magnetic therapy.

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Magnetic Resonance Research Center, School of Medicine, University of Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh, PA 15213, USA.


Based on the electromagnetic model of the transmission line for the channel and the birdcage resonator for the meridian network, we interpret two effects, seemingly incomprehensible in terms of current Western physiology, the lasting effect and the remote effect. For the lasting effect, acupuncture enhances the amplitude of the Qi standing wave, and this increased amplitude is retained and thus is able to sustain a gradual remodeling of the extracellular matrix in interstitial connective tissues, resulting in a lasting therapeutic effect. For the remote effect (acupuncture effect far from the site of needle insertion), our model puts the mechanism of magnetic therapy on an equal footing with that of acupuncture. It may not be a coincidence that accounts of investigators in both acupuncture and magnetotherapy about the depth of the effective site--along cleavage planes between muscles, or between muscle and bone or tendon--are in accord with that of the Huang Di Nei Jing about the course of channels: "they are embedded and travel between interstitial muscles, deep and invisible." A possible magnetic field generated outside the birdcage may be manipulated to produce local areas of higher temperature or very strong fields.

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