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Insomnia, a commonsleep disorder, affects general well-being, hastens the onset of otherdiseases, and impairs work performance. Hypnotic medications are efficacious inthe short term but have obvious side effects. Acupuncture, often used to treatinsomnia in traditional Chinese medicine TCM, is considered to be beneficialin restoring the normal sleep-wake cycle by regulating and restoring thenatural flow of qi energy power.The three main TCM theories for treating insomnia by acupuncture are thetranquilization disturbance, zangfu disturbance disequilibrium of internal organs, and imbalance of yin and yang theories. Moxibustion, another treatment for insomnia, isusually combined with acupuncture. Acupuncture and moxibustion with tuina exercise massage, acupuncture with Chinese herbalinjection, electroacupuncture, and acupuncture with medication or psychotherapyare other interventions. Some acupuncture-based methods such as needle-rollingacupuncture, auricular acupoint plaster therapy, phlebotomy, and acupointcatgut-embedding therapy are used as well. Although most clinical trials haveshown that acupuncture and its combination therapies are significantlyeffective in insomnia, the beneficial effects may have been overvalued, becauseof small sample size, nonstrict inclusion and exclusion criteria, flawedmethodology, short follow-up, or nonstandardized evaluation. Therefore,clinical studies of high methodological quality are needed to verify theefficacy of acupuncture, moxibustion, and other combination therapies in insomnia.


Traditional Chinese Medicine, Acupuncture, Moxibustion, Auricular Acupoint, Combination Therapy

Cite this paper

Wen, J. , Kan, Q. and Chen, Y. 2016 Acupuncture, Moxibustion, and Combination Therapies for Insomnia. Chinese Medicine, 7, 67-76. doi: 10.4236-cm.2016.72009.

Autor: Jianguo Wen1, Quancheng Kan2, Yan Chen1,2*



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