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      P03.01. Acupuncture's Effectiveness at Treating Subclinical Hypothyroid Disease via the HPA/HPT Axis: A Multiple Case Series

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      Global Advances in Health and Medicine

      Global Advances in Health and Medicine

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          Abstract

          Focus Area: Integrative Approaches to Care

          Purpose:

          Subclinical hypothyroid disease (SHypo) is defined as having serum thyroid-stimulating hormone (TSH) concentration above the normal reference range while serum free thyroxine (FT4) and free triiodothyronine (FT3) are within reference range. It is estimated that 4% to 10% of the general population has subclinical hypothyroidism, increasing to 20% in women over 60 years of age. The current treatment recommendation for SHypo with TSH levels between 3 MIU/L and 5 mIU/L is to monitor levels every 6 to 12 months. Studies have shown that levothyroxine is not effective for this TSH group. Based on Hans Selye's general adaption theory (GAS), it is known that acute and chronic stress can affect thyroid function via the hypothalamus-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) and the hypothalamus-pituitary-thyroid (HPT) axes. Acupuncture can reduce the body's stress response and therefore should improve thyroid function. This research was conducted to determine if acupuncture is a viable treatment option for SHypo.

          Methods:

          Two cases were studied for replication. The female patients, aged 34 and 44 years, received 12 Japanese Meridian acupuncture constitutional treatments and moxibustion once per week. Serum TSH, FT4, FT3, salivary cortisol, Perceived Stress Scale–10 (PSS-10) were measured at pretreatment, mid-treatment, and posttreatment. Number of hypothyroid symptoms present (Zulewski index) were assessed prior to each treatment. All measurements were analyzed for changes over time and cross-case comparison.

          Results:

          Both patients had decreases in TSH and number of hypothyroid symptoms present and increases in total cortisol load and morning diurnal cortisol rhythm. Both patients reported improvements in bowel movements and menstruation.

          Conclusion:

          From this study, it can be theorized that acupuncture is a viable treatment option for SHypo; however, more rigorous larger-scale research studies need to be conducted to validate and extend these findings.

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          Author and article information

          Journal
          Glob Adv Health Med
          Glob Adv Health Med
          gahmj
          Global Advances in Health and Medicine
          Global Advances in Health and Medicine
          2164-957X
          2164-9561
          November 2013
          01 November 2013
          01 November 2013
          : 2
          : Suppl , Scientific Abstracts from the International Congress for Clinicians in Complementary & Alternative Medicine
          : S135
          Affiliations
          [(1) ]Pacific College of Oriental Medicine, Laguna Hills, California, United States
          Author notes
          Contact: Raina Tsuda, wellnesswithaloha@ 123456cox.net

          Scientific abstracts presented at the International Congress for Clinicians in Complementary & Integrative Medicine 2013

          Article
          gahmj.2013.097CP.P03.01
          10.7453/gahmj.2013.097CP.P03.01
          3875017
          © 2013 GAHM LLC.

          This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Non Commercial- No Derivative 3.0 License, which permits rights to copy, distribute and transmit the work for noncommercial purposes only, provided the original work is properly cited.

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