Electroacupuncture improves bladder and bowel function in patients with traumatic spinal cord injury: Results from a prospective observational study

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Abstract

In order to explore the effect of electroacupuncture (EA) for chronic bowel and bladder dysfunction after traumatic spinal cord injury, 14 patients were treated with electroacupuncture once a day, five times a week for the first four weeks, and once every other day, three times a week for the following four weeks. The patients were then followed up for six months. After treatment, four (4/14, 28.57%) patients resumed normal voiding; six (6/14, 42.86%) resumed normal voiding for no less than half of all micturition behaviors; four (4/14, 28.57%) required supplementary urination methods for higher than half of all micturition behaviors. These effects persisted during followup. Mean postvoid RUV decreased by 190.29±101.87 mL ( P<0.01 ) after treatment and by 198.86±112.18 mL ( P<0.01 ) during followup. Patients’ weekly urinary incontinence frequency decreased 7.14±46.34 times/week ( P=0.036 ) after treatment and decreased 49.86±44.38 times/week during followup. After treatment, four (4/14, 28.57%) patients resumed normal bowel movements ( P=0.025 ); five (5/14, 35.71%) reduced the dependence on supplementary defecation methods; five (5/14, 35.71%) had no changes. In patients with chronic bowel and bladder dysfunction after traumatic SCI, EA may provide a valuable alternative tool in improving patients’ self-controlled bowel and bladder functions with minimal side effects.

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Liu, Z., Wang, W., Wu, J., Zhou, K., & Liu, B. (2013). Electroacupuncture improves bladder and bowel function in patients with traumatic spinal cord injury: Results from a prospective observational study. Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine, 2013. https://doi.org/10.1155/2013/543174

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