Table of Contents Author Guidelines Submit a Manuscript
Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2011, Article ID 689813, 9 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2011/689813
Research Article

Pilot Scheme of Health Policy in Stroke Adjuvant Acupuncture Therapy for Acute and Subacute Ischemic Stroke in Taiwan

1Department of Neurology, Chang Gung Memorial Hospital at Keelung, Keelung 20401, Taiwan
2Department of Acupuncture, China Medical University Hospital, Taichung 40447, Taiwan
3School of Chinese Medicine, China Medical University, Taichung 40402, Taiwan
4Department of Neurology, Division of Cerebrovascular Diseases, Chang Gung Memorial Hospital—Kaohsiung Medical Center, Kaohsiung 83301, Taiwan
5Center of Discharge Planning Service, Chang Gung Memorial Hospital—Kaohsiung Medical Center, Kaohsiung 83301, Taiwan
6College of Medicine, Chang Gung University, Kaohsiung 83301, Taiwan
7Yuh-Ing Junior College of Health Care and Management, Kaohsiung 80776, Taiwan
8Graduate Institute of Clinical Medical Sciences, Chang Gung University, Taoyuan 33302, Taiwan
9Clinical Informatics and Medical Statistics Research Center, Chang Gung University, Taoyuan 33302, Taiwan
10Department of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Division of Internal Medicine, Chang Gung Memorial Hospital—Kaohsiung Medical Center, Kaohsiung 83301, Taiwan
11Resource Center for Clinical Research, Chang Gung Memorial Hospital at Linkou, Taoyuan 33305, Taiwan
12Department of Traditional Chinese Medicine, Division of Acupuncture and Chinese Traumatology, Chang Gung Memorial Hospital—Kaohsiung Medical Center, Kaohsiung 83301, Taiwan

Received 10 August 2010; Revised 28 December 2010; Accepted 7 February 2011

Copyright © 2011 Yi-Chia Wei et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

To reduce the health care burden of strokes, the Taiwan Department of Health launched the Pilot Scheme of the Health Policy in Stroke Adjuvant Acupuncture Therapy (HPSAAT) in 2006. This cross-sectional, hospital-based, match-controlled study at Chang Gung Memorial Hospital-Kaohsiung Medical Center during 2006∼2008 retrospectively evaluated the clinical characteristics of acute and subacute ischemic stroke patients who electively joined the HPSAAT. The study also evaluated the safety and clinical benefits of adjuvant acupuncture in treating acute and subacute ischemic stroke patients. Twenty-six HPSAAT participants and 52 age-sex matched random controls were enrolled. The stroke baseline of the HPSAAT participants was more severe than the non-HPSAAT controls. Although the stroke severity closely correlates to mortality and comorbidity, this study noted no significant complications in the HPSAAT participants during the acupuncture treatment course. Adjuvant acupuncture was considered safe at the acute and subacute stages of ischemic stroke. Due to uneven baseline severity, the clinical benefits in reducing neurological deficits and functional recovery were not concluded in this study.