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Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine
Volume 2015, Article ID 381634, 7 pages
Research Article

Differences in the Properties of the Radial Artery between Cun, Guan, Chi, and Nearby Segments Using Ultrasonographic Imaging: A Pilot Study on Arterial Depth, Diameter, and Blood Flow

1Medical Engineering R&D Group, Korea Institute of Oriental Medicine, Daejeon 305-811, Republic of Korea
2Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Baltimore, MD 21205-2196, USA

Received 19 August 2014; Revised 4 January 2015; Accepted 15 January 2015

Academic Editor: Wen-Fu Tang

Copyright © 2015 Jaeuk U. Kim 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.


Aim of the Study. The three conventional pulse-diagnostic palpation locations (PLs) on both wrists are Cun, Guan, and Chi, and each location reveals different clinical information. To identify anatomical or hemodynamic specificity, we used ultrasonographic imaging to determine the arterial diameter, radial artery depth, and arterial blood flow velocity at the three PLs and at nearby non-PL segments. Methods. We applied an ultrasound scanner to 44 subjects and studied the changes in the arterial diameter and depth as well as in the average/maximum blood flow velocities along the radial artery at three PLs and three non-PLs located more proximally than Chi. Results. All of the measurements at all of the PLs were significantly different (P < 0.01). Artery depth was significantly different among the non-PLs; however, this difference became insignificant after normalization to the arm circumference. Conclusions. Substantial changes in the hemodynamic and anatomical properties of the radial artery around the three PLs were insignificant at the nearby non-PLs segments. This finding may provide a partial explanation for the diagnostic use of “Cun, Guan, and Chi.