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J Altern Complement Med. 2010 Oct;16(10):1073-8. doi: 10.1089/acm.2009.0326. Epub 2010 Oct 9.

Immediate effect of acupuncture at Sanyinjiao (SP6) and Xuanzhong (GB39) on uterine arterial blood flow in primary dysmenorrhea.

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School of Acupuncture and Moxibustion, Shandong University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Jinan, China.



The objective of this study was to compare immediate effect of acupuncture at SP6 on uterine arterial blood flow in primary dysmenorrhea with that of GB39.


This was a prospective, randomized clinical trial.


Sixty-six (66) patients with primary dysmenorrhea from the Affiliated Hospital of Shangdong University of Traditional Chinese Medicine were recruited.


The SP6 group (n =32) was treated with manual acupuncture at bilateral SP6 for 5 minutes after obtaining needling sensation (de qi) during the period of menstrual pain, whereas the control group (n = 34) was needled at GB39 of both sides for 5 minutes when they suffered menstrual pain.


Differences in pulsatility index (PI), resistance index (RI), and ratio of systolic peak and diastolic peak (A/B) in uterine arteries were the main outcome measures.


Highly significant reductions were observed in the SP6 treatment group 5 minutes after treatment in menstrual pain scores (8.17 ± 1.90 versus 11.20 ± 2.66; p < 0.001), values of PI (1.75 ± 0.48 versus 2.32 ± 0.70; p < 0.001), RI (0.72 ± 0.11 versus 0.78 ± 0.07; p < 0.001), and A/B (4.33 ± 1.37 versus 5.23 ± 1.67; p < 0.001). Compared with the GB39 control group, patients in the SP6 treatment group showed significant reductions in 5 minutes after treatment in the changes of menstrual pain scores (3.03 ± 2.36 versus 0.00 ± 0.29; p < 0.001), values of PI (0.57 ± 0.42 versus -0.10 ± 0.58; p < 0.001), RI (0.06 ± 0.08 versus -0.03 ± 0.15; p < 0.01), and A/B (0.90 ± 0.87 versus 0.23 ± 1.02; p < 0.01). There were no significant changes in menstrual pain scores, values of PI, RI, or A/B before and after treatment in the GB39 control group (p > 0.05). No adverse events from treatment were reported.


This study suggests that needling at SP6 can immediately improve uterine arterial blood flow of patients with primary dysmenorrhea, while GB39 does not have these effects.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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