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Brain mechanism of acupuncture for children with anisometropic amblyopia
source:PubMed 2024-02-22 [Research]
a resting functional magnetic resonance imaging study based on voxel-mirrored homotopic connectivity

Jue Wang,1 Jing Jia,1 Yan Sun,2 Chong-Bing Ma,1 Yu-Zhu Chen,1 An-Guo Liu,corresponding author1 and Xing-Ke Yancorresponding author1


1 College of Acupuncture-Moxibustion and Tuina, Gansu University of Chinese Medicine, Lanzhou 730101, Gansu Province, China

2 Department of Ophthalmology, Lanzhou Purui Ophthalmology Hospital, Lanzhou 730050, Gansu Province, China

corresponding authorCorresponding author.


Correspondence to: Xing-Ke Yan and An-Guo Liu. No.1 Chinese Medicine Avenue, Heping Development Zone, Lanzhou 730101, Gansu Province, China.





To explore the brain mechanism of acupuncture for children with anisometropic amblyopia using the voxel-mirror homotopic connectivity (VMHC) analysis method of resting functional magnetic resonance imaging (rs-fMRI) technology based on clinical effectiveness.


Eighty children with anisometropic monocular amblyopia were randomly divided into two groups: control (40 cases, 1 case of shedding) and acupuncture (40 cases, 1 case of shedding) groups. The control group was treated with glasses, red flash, grating, and visual stimulations, with each procedure conducted for 5min per time. Based on routine treatment, the acupuncture group underwent acupuncture of “regulating qi and unblocking meridians to bright eyes”, Jingming (BL1), Cuanzhu (BL2), Guangming (GB37), Fengchi (GB20) acupoints were taken on both sides, with the needle kept for 30min each time. Both groups were treated once every other day, three times per week, for a total of 4wk. After the treatment, the overall curative effect of the two groups and the latency and amplitude changes of P100 wave of pattern visual-evoked potential were counted. At the same time, nine children with left eye amblyopia were randomly selected from the two groups and were scanned with rs-fMRI before and after treatment. The differences in the brain regions between the two groups were compared and analyzed with VMHC.


Chi-square test showed a notable difference in the total efficiency rate between the acupuncture (94.87%) and control groups (79.49%). Regarding the P100 wave latency and amplitude, the acupuncture group had significantly shorter latency and higher amplitude of P100 wave than the control group. Moreover, the VMHC values of the bilateral temporal lobe, superior temporal gyrus, and middle temporal gyrus were notably increased in the acupuncture group after treatment.


Acupuncture combined with conventional treatment can significantly improve the corrected visual acuity and optic nerve conduction in children with anisometropic amblyopia. Compared with the conventional treatment, the regulation of acupuncture on the functional activities of the relevant brain areas in the anterior cerebellum may be an effective acupuncture mechanism for anisometropic amblyopia.

Keywords: resting functional magnetic resonance imaging, voxel-mirror homotopy connection, anisometropic amblyopia, acupuncture