To observe the clinical effect of heat sensitive moxibustion (HSM) and its regularity of acupoint heat-sensitization in the treatment of allergic rhinitis (AR) patients.
Seventy patients with AR were randomly divided into HSM and manual acupuncture groups (n＝35/group). For patients of the HSM group, acupoints Yintang (EX-HN 3), bilateral Yingxiang (LI 20), Shangxing (GV 23), Tongtian (BL 7), Feishu (BL 13), Hegu (LI 4), etc. were used, and for patients of the manual acupuncture group, bilateral LI 20 and LI 4, Bitong (EX-HN 8) and EX-HN 3 were needled and stimulated with uniform reinforcing-reducing needling method. The treatment was conducted once every other day, for 20 days, with 3 days' interval between two 10 days. The symptoms of sneezing, running nose, nasal obstruction, and nasal itching were scored as 1, 2 and 3 points according to their severity. The signs of turbinate-nose cavity bottom/nasal septum correlation, morphological state (swelling or not) of inferior nasal concha and color of nasal mucosa, appearance (deviation or polyp) of the middle turbinate and nasal septum were scored as 1, 2 and 3 points according to their severity. The total score equaled to symptom score plus nasal sign score. The distribution of heat sensitization acupoints for effectively improving AR were recorded.
The total effective rate of 82.86%(29/35) in the HSM group had no marked difference in comparison with that of 74.29%(26/35) in the manual acupuncture group (P>0.05). After the treatment, the total scores of symptoms and nasal signs of both HSM and manual acupuncture groups were significantly reduced in comparison with their own individual pre-treatment (P<0.01), and those in the HSM group were significantly decrased than those in the manual acupuncture group (P<0.05). In 35 patients of the HSM group, among the detected 57 acupoints, the most frequently sensitive acupoints were LI 20, EX-HN 3, EX-HN 8, Shangyintang, BL 13, Shenque(CV 8), GV 23, Fengchi(GB 20), Die'e and Dazhui (GV 14) in sequence, mainly covering the Governor Vessel, Large Intestine Meridian of Hand-yangming(LI), and Bladder Meridian of Foot-taiyang(BL), and characterized by heat conduction, heat diffusion, diathermancy, non-thermal (mainly itching) sensation, thermal sensation mainly in the deep tissue and in the distant part rather than in the body surface and the local part.
HSM has a positive effect on improvement of AR, when applied, acupoints LI 20, EX-HN 3, EX-HN 8, Shangyintang, BL 13, CV 8, GV 23, GB 20, Die'e and GV 14 are highly recommended.