Researchers conclude that acupuncture is beneficial for the treatment of vascular dementia. Vascular dementia is caused by brain damage due to impaired blood flow to the brain. This is common after a stroke or a series of mini-strokes. Any condition that damages blood vessels that feed oxygen and nutrients to the brain may cause vascular dementia.

The study compared scalp acupuncture with standard body acupuncture. In this multi-center randomized controlled clinical trial, 184 subjects with vascular dementia due to Liver and Kidney deficiency received either scalp acupuncture or body acupuncture. The scalp acupuncture group showed significantly greater improvements in cognition than the body style acupuncture group. Social behavior scores improved significantly in both the body style and scalp acupuncture groups. TCM (Traditional Chinese Medicine) differential diagnostic conditions improved significantly in both acupuncture groups as did the ADL (Activities of Daily Living) score. Overall, scalp acupuncture received higher improvement scores due to its ability to improve cognition. The researchers concluded that scalp acupuncture substantially improves the overall condition of patients with vascular dementia including cognition, activities of daily living, TCM signs and symptoms, mental state and social behavior.

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