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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2013, Article ID 287184, 8 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2013/287184
Research Article

Remote Effect of Lower Limb Acupuncture on Latent Myofascial Trigger Point of Upper Trapezius Muscle: A Pilot Study

1Department of Physical Medical and Rehabilitation, Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, Chiayi, Chiayi County 613, Taiwan
2School of Medicine, Chang Gung University, Taoyuan 333, Taiwan
3Department of Emergency Medicine, Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, Chiayi, Chiayi County 613, Taiwan
4Department of Nursing, Chang Gung University of Science and Technology, Chiayi, Chiayi County 613, Taiwan
5Department of Physical Medical and Rehabilitation, Chang Gung Memorial Hospital, Yunlin, Yunlin County 638, Taiwan
6Graduate Institute of Clinical Medical Science, College of Medicine, Chang Gung University, Taoyuan 333, Taiwan

Received 12 January 2013; Revised 26 March 2013; Accepted 29 March 2013

Academic Editor: Chang-Zern Hong

Copyright © 2013 Kai-Hua Chen 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

Objectives. To demonstrate the use of acupuncture in the lower limbs to treat myofascial pain of the upper trapezius muscles via a remote effect. Methods. Five adults with latent myofascial trigger points (MTrPs) of bilateral upper trapezius muscles received acupuncture at Weizhong (UB40) and Yanglingquan (GB34) points in the lower limbs. Modified acupuncture was applied at these points on a randomly selected ipsilateral lower limb (experimental side) versus sham needling on the contralateral lower limb (control side) in each subject. Each subject received two treatments within a one-week interval. To evaluate the remote effect of acupuncture, the range of motion (ROM) upon bending the contralateral side of the cervical spine was assessed before and after each treatment. Results. There was significant improvement in cervical ROM after the second treatment () in the experimental group, and the increased ROM on the modified acupuncture side was greater compared to the sham needling side (). Conclusions. A remote effect of acupuncture was demonstrated in this pilot study. Using modified acupuncture needling at remote acupuncture points in the ipsilateral lower limb, our treatments released tightness due to latent MTrPs of the upper trapezius muscle.