Progress on the Experimental Research of Sciatic Nerve Injury with Acupuncture

Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2021 Dec 23;2021:1401756. doi: 10.1155/2021/1401756. eCollection 2021.


Objective: To collect and summarize relevant literatures on the experimental researches of sciatic nerve injury (SNI) with acupuncture during the last decade providing a guideline for effectively treating SNI with acupuncture in the future.

Methods: The Chinese and English databases including China National Knowledge Infrastructure (CNKI), Wanfang Data Knowledge Service Platform (WanFang Data), VIP Information Chinese Journal Service Platform (VIP Date), and PubMed were searched from 2009 to 2020 with keywords of "acupuncture and moxibustion OR acupuncture OR electroacupuncture OR scalp acupuncture OR wrist-ankle acupuncture OR acupoint injection OR ear acupuncture" AND "sciatic nerve OR sciatic nerve injury OR sciatic injury OR SNI." The collected data were mainly evaluated in the items of animal model of SNI, type of interventions, selection of acupuncture points (acupoints), course of treatment and its frequency, and approaches of assessment.

Results: A total of 89 studies were included in this analysis. Among them, the most commonly used animal models of SNI were produced by the clamp or transverse injury in the rats; the most frequently used intervention was electroacupuncture with dilatational wave of 2/100 Hz; the frequency of acupuncture was mainly performed once per day lasting for more than 2 weeks; the mainly selected acupoints were Huantiao (GB30), Zusanli (ST36), and Yanglingquan (GB34); and the approaches of assessment were contained with behavioral, functional, morphological, histological, cellular, and molecular measurements.

Conclusion: The results indicated that the experimental researches of SNI with acupuncture has made marked progress in recent years, which may provide important clues for further investigating the underlying mechanisms of acupuncture for the treatment of SNI in the future.

Publication types

  • Review