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J Pharmacopuncture. 2017 Mar;20(1):57-60. doi: 10.3831/KPI.2017.20.009.

The Use of Korean Medicine to Treat Patients with Spinobulbar Muscular Atrophy, Kennedy's Disease - A Case Study.

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Department of Acupuncture & Moxibustion Medicine, Wonkwang University Gwangju Korean Medical Hospital, Gwangju, Korea; Clinical Research Center of Nervous & Muscular System Disease of Wonkwang University Gwangju Korean Medical Hospital, Gwangju, Korea.
Department of Radiology, Wonkwang University Gwangju Korean Medical Hospital, Gwangju, Korea.
Department of Nursing, Gwang-Ju Womens University, Gwangju, Korea.



Studies involving patients with spinobulbar muscular atrophy (SBMA), which is often referred to as Kennedy's disease, similar to those involving patients with progressive muscular disease (PMD), are rare. This paper reports a case study involving the use of Korean medicine to treat a patient with SBMA.


We treated a patient with SBMA with unique symptoms by using various kinds of pharmacopuncture and herbal medicines for about two and a half years. After the treatment had ended, we evaluated the patient's conditions and the side effects of the treatment.


After treatment, the patient's symptoms were stabilized, and the patient suffered no abnormalities or side effects. No special changes in condition were noted during treatment period, and the patient was very satisfied with his response to treatment.


Existing treatments have some considerable after effects and are difficult to apply in domestic clinics. In this regard, our findings should open possibilities for new clinical guidelines. Nevertheless, the limitations associated with this case study should be resolved, and more studies need to be conducted.


Kennedy’s disease; Korean medical treatment; pharmacopuncture; spinobulbar muscular atrophy; herbal medicine

Conflict of interest statement

Conflict of interest The authors declare that there are no conflicts of interest.

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