Modern research has revealed scientific reasons why acupuncture is a successful therapy. In the 1970s, reports appeared in Western medical literature suggesting that acupuncture reduces pain sensation through direct stimulation of the nerve, which changes the quality of signaling along nerve cells.
In fact, research suggests that acupuncture may suppress the nociceptive trigeminal nucleus caudalis and spinal dorsal horn neurons via modulation of the release of neuropeptides and neurotransmitters.
- Sheng LL, Nishiyama K, Honda T, et.al. Suppressive effects of Neiting acupuncture on toothache: an experimental analysis on Fos expression evoked by tooth pulp stimulation in the trigeminal subnucleus pars caudalis and the periaqueductal gray of rats. Neurosci Res. 2000;38:331-339.
- Zhao CH, Stillman MJ, Rozen TD. Traditional and evidence-based acupuncture in headache management: theory, mechanism, and practice. Headache. 2005;45:716-730