Influence of naloxone on electro-acupuncture analgesia using an experimental dental pain test. Review of possible mechanisms of action

M. Ernst, M. H.M. Lee

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to examine in man the analgesic effect of non-segmental electroacupuncture (EA) limited to a single point (Hoku hand point) and the influence of naloxone using an original modified electrical dental pain test. Acupuncture techniques as well as experimental pain models are factors accounting for the discrepancies in the results. For this reason, we designed an experimental pain test characterized by a high degree of specificity, validity and reliability. We chose optimal conditions for eliciting specific acupuncture effect, i. e. non-segmental, low frequency and painful intensity range. A cross-over repeated measure experimental design was used. Five normal trained subjects participated in 65 sessions under four conditions (control, EA, EA plus naloxone, EA plus placebo). Changes in experimental dental pain thresholds served as indices of analgesia. The results indicated a 27% pain threshold increase after 30 minutes of EA stimulation (p less than . 0001), with no differential effect between pain detection (mild pain sensation) and pain discomfort (strong pain sensation).

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)5-22
Number of pages18
JournalAcupuncture and Electro-Therapeutics Research
Volume12
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Jan 1 1987

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Complementary and alternative medicine
  • Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine

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