Real and placebo acupuncture was given by a physician who was also a trained acupuncturist in the Chinese method of acupuncture. The acupuncture points used for real acupuncture were Dingchuan, Ren 17 (Shanzhong), lung 6 and lung 7. Dingchuan, used for the treatment of acute asthma, is located 0.5 cun from the midline between C7 and T1 spinous processes. A “cun” is the distance between the creases of the two interphalangeal joints when the middle finger is fully flexed. Ren 17 (Shanzhong) regulates lung function and is located on the front of the chest between the nipples. In females, the 4th intercostal space is used. Lung 6 (Kongzui) is located on the anterior aspect of the forearm, 7 cun above the wrist crease. Lung 6 is used for treating acute lung conditions. Lung 7 (lieque), located 1.5 cuns above the radial stylod process, is supposed to relieve airflow obstruction in the lung. cialis professional
Placebo acupuncture points used were triple energy 5, stomach 25 and gallbladder 34. Triple energy 5 is on the back of the wrist, stomach 25 is on the anterior abdominal wall next to the umbilicus; and gallbladder 34 is on the front of the head of the fibula. These three points are believed to have no effect on the treatment of asthma and were therefore used as placebo points. Autoclaved stainless steel needles (25 cm long, 0.32 mm in diameter) were inserted aseptically without local anesthesia. In order to achieve the desired acupuncture effect on insertion of the needles, the acupuncturist tried to achieve a maximum local sensation of numbness with a systemic feeling of distension or heaviness. The needles were manually rotated clockwise and anticlockwise every 5 min during the 20-min treatment period and were subsequently removed. The same technique was used for both real and placebo acupuncture. The acupuncturist only gave the acupuncture and did not divulge the nature of treatment given to the observer performing histamine challenge studies in another part of the clinic to maintain the double-blind nature of the study.
Newman-KeuIs method was used for multiple paired comparison of the mean values of the baseline FEV, values on the three study days. The same method was used for comparison of HAP concentration required for PC20 on the control, real and placebo acupuncture days and against each other.