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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2014 (2014), Article ID 518313, 6 pages
Research Article

A Unique Electrical Thermal Stimulation System Comparable to Moxibustion of Subcutaneous Tissue

Department of Biomedical Engineering, Yonsei University, 234 Maeji, Heungeop, Wonju, Gangwon-do 220-842, Republic of Korea

Received 28 February 2014; Revised 6 May 2014; Accepted 26 May 2014; Published 13 July 2014

Academic Editor: Xueyong Shen

Copyright © 2014 Hyoun-Seok Myoung and Kyoung-Joung Lee. 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.


Moxibustion strengthens immunity and it is an effective treatment modality, but, depending on the material quantity, shape, and composition, the thermal strength and intensity can be difficult to control, which may cause pain or epidermal burns. To overcome these limitations, a heat stimulating system which is able to control the thermal intensity was developed. The temperature distributions on epidermis, at 5 mm and 10 mm of depth, in rabbit femoral tissue were compared between moxibustion and the electric thermal stimulation system. The stimulation system consists of a high radio frequency dielectric heating equipment (2 MHz frequency, maximum power 200 W), isolation probe, isolation plate, negative pressure generator, and a temperature assessment system. The temperature was modulated by controlling the stimulation pulse duty ratio, repetition number, and output. There were 95% and 91% temperature distribution correlations between moxibustion and the thermal stimulus at 5 mm and 10 mm of depth in tissue, respectively. Moreover, the epidermal temperature in thermal stimulation was lower than that in moxibustion. These results showed that heat loss by the electric thermal stimulation system is less than that by the traditional moxibustion method. Furthermore, the proposed electric thermal stimulation did not cause adverse effects, such as suppuration or blisters, and also provided subcutaneous stimulation comparable to moxibustion.