Visual function with acupuncture tested by visual evoked potential

Yoshiko Sagara, Nobuo Fuse, Motohiko Seimiya, Syunji Yokokura, Kei Watanabe, Toru Nakazawa, Masayuki Kurusu, Takashi Seki, Makoto Tamai

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


Visual evoked potential (VEP) testing is used frequently and is an important ophthalmologic physiological test to examine visual functions objectively. The VEP is a complicated waveform consisting of negative waveform named N75 and N135, and positive waveform named P100. Delayed P100 latency and greatly attenuated amplitude on VEP are known characteristics for diagnosing optic nerve disease. Acupuncture has been used to treat wide clinical symptoms with minimal side effects. The confirmation of the efficacy of acupuncture generally relies on subjective symptoms. There is not much scientific evidence supporting the acupuncture treatments for eye diseases up to today. However, the VEP test can evaluate objectively and numerically the efficacy of the treatment by the acupuncture. We analyzed 19 healthy subjects (38 eyes). The P100 latencies in the group of less than 101.7 msec (total average) before acupuncture stimulations were not different than those after treatment (98.2 ± 3.0 msec, 98.2 ± 4.0 msec, respectively, p = 0.88, n = 17), but the latencies in those subjects with longer or equal to 101.7 msec were statistically different after acupuncture (104.6 ± 2.8 msec, 101.9 ± 3.7 msec, respectively, p = 0.006, n = 21). These results show that the acupuncture stimulation contributes to the P100 latencies of pattern reversal (PR)-VEP to some subjects who have delayed latencies, and this electrophysiological method is a valuable technique in monitoring the effectiveness of acupuncture therapy in the improvements of visual functions. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the physiological effects by acupuncture stimulations using PR-VEP in normal subjects.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)235-241
Number of pages7
JournalTohoku Journal of Experimental Medicine
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 2006 Jun 16


  • Acupuncture
  • Alternative medicine
  • VEP
  • Visual function

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)


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