Acupuncture Continuing Education

Acupuncture Gout Relief Report

sp5 gout

Acupuncture treatment assists patients in alleviating pain and actively dealing with accumulated uric acid. The electroacupuncture method was used to treat patients with gouty arthritis (GA). Researchers at the Orthopedic Department of Malanshan Traditional Chinese Medicine Hospital investigated acupuncture and determined that it helps to stimulate acupoints and regulate meridians, thereby strengthening the body’s defenses. [1]

Ninety patients with gouty arthritis were randomly divided into an observation group and a control group. The control group was treated with routine anti-inflammatory, analgesic, and uric acid-lowering drugs. The observation group received acupuncture treatment. After treatment, the total effective rate of the acupuncture observation group was 86.7%, significantly higher than the 57.8% of the drug monotherapy control group.


In some applications, electroacupuncture has a greater analgesic effect than manual acupuncture, making it the better choice for the treatment of acute gout. The frequency and waveform of electroacupuncture play essential roles in therapeutic results. Various waveforms of electroacupuncture and analgesic effects reduce inflammatory responses and alleviate joint damage, among which the disperse-dense wave is often optimal.

Under different frequencies, electroacupuncture lowers uric acid, but the effect is superior at lower frequencies. When pain relief time is used as a parameter to observe, the pain relief effect of low-frequency acupuncture is noticeably better than that of high-frequency acupuncture.

The control group only took Laxoprofen Sodium tablets orally, while the observation treatment group had the application of selected points such as ST36 (Zusanli), SP9 (Yinlingquan), and local acupuncture points, keeping the needles in place for 30 minutes with a continuous wave (frequency 2Hz, current 1mA). After treatment, the treatment group showed superior results compared to the control group regarding pain scores and inflammation factor levels. Learn more in the acupuncture CEU course: Gout Treatments >

Acupuncture and Herbs

In another investigation, a study included 60 participants, with 30 participants each randomized into the observation and control groups. [2] The control group was treated with oral colchicine tables, while the observation group received a combination of Han Fan Ji (Radix Stephaniae Tetrandrae) and Huang Qi (Astragalus) decoction along with acupuncture. This pairing of herbs was first documented in the classic work, the Shi Jin Mo Dui Yao. Primary acupoints included LR3 (Taichong), SP6 (Sanyinjiao), LI4 (Hegu) and SP5 (Shangqiu). After treatment, TCM symptom overall score and laboratory indicators in the observation group significantly more significantly decreased compared with the control group. Based on the data, the researchers conclude that acupuncture and herbs produce superior patient outcomes.

In yet another investigation, research showed a control group was solely treated with oral Sanbi decoction, and the treatment group received a combination of Sanbi decoction with acupuncture. [3] Acupoints selected included SP6 (Sanyinjiao), ST36 (Zusanli), LI11 (Quchi), and SP9 (Yinlinquan). The treatment group showed significant improvements in all laboratory indicator levels after treatment compared with the control group. Also, the treatment group had better outcomes in pain relief, mobility and function of joints, and swelling.

[1] Wu Haomin. (2023). Research progress on acupuncture treatment of gouty arthritis. Guangming Traditional Chinese Medicine (23), 4693-4696.
[2] Chen Haiyan, Liu Huaizhen & Cui Xinliang. (2021). Clinical study on the treatment of acute gouty arthritis using a combination of acupuncture and medicine. Modern Chinese Medicine (05), 85-89. doi:10.13424/j.cnki.mtcm.2021.05.016.
[3] Jie Shushan & Song Shasha. (2021). The clinical efficacy and immune function of acupuncture combined with Sanbi Decoction on patients with gouty arthritis. Shanghai Journal of Acupuncture and Moxibustion (04), 441-446. doi:10.13460/j. issn.1005-0957.2021.04.0441.


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