Acupuncture, the medical practice of inserting and vibration of tiny needles into various sections of body, has now been found to be beneficial for treatment of post-operative nausea and vomiting. A review of studies made on this kind of treatment, by Dr. Anna Lee of the Department of Anesthesia and Intensive Care at the Chinese Hospital in Hong Kong determined that what is known as P-6 or Paricardium 6 acupuncture treatment significantly reduces unpleasant symptoms of nausea and vomiting after various types of surgery.
Dr. Lee’s review was based on 40 different studies conducted which compared P-6 acupuncture and other acupoint stimuli, such as transcutaneous nerve stimulation and acupressure wristbands on the same part of the body. The review concluded that this acupoint stimulation reduced or eliminated the need for anti-nausea drugs.
P-6 acupoints are located on the underside of the forearm about 2 inches below the joint between the hand and the wrist. You can do a self-stimulation on this acupoint by relaxing your arm and then pressing your thumb between the tendons into the point until it feels quite tender. Hold it down firmly from 30 seconds to 2 minutes and then perform the same treatment on the other arm.
Hospitals and other medical facilities are welcoming these findings as an alternative to the use of antemetic or anti-nausea drugs (due to their increasingly high costs) and can be used before, during and after the surgery.
Mainland Chinese hospitals have been using this kind of treatment for years, often as the only means of alleviating these symptoms.
Acupuncture is now widely used in the treatment of a variety of disorders, including arthritis, fertility problems, migraine headaches, bed wetting, post traumatic stress disorder, breaking the smoking habit, and even sexual dysfunction.
Lee’s reviews of 40 studies covered 4,858 patients, most of them adults who had elective surgery performed under general anesthesia. In addition to findings on post-operative patients, it was found that acupressure wristbands, which stimulate the P-6 section of the wrist were similarly beneficial for reliving nausea in persons suffering form motion sickness and morning sickness during pregnancy.