Optical examination of the efficacy of contact needle therapy for chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy: integration of inspection in Kampo therapy with color spectrum information
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Cancer chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN) deteriorates the patient’s quality of life, often resulting in discontinuation of treatment with potentially effective chemotherapy. Contact needle therapy (CNT) is one of the traditional Japanese acupuncture methods based on the concept of Kampo (Japanese traditional) medicine. CNT on CIPN has been considered effective empirically, but an objective evaluation has proven difficult. We have focused on the oxygen saturation besides the symptom score. We have already proposed optical path-length matrix method (OPLM) for estimating oxygen saturation of the skin, which may help in locating peripheral tissue damage, including neuronal damage. Four patients with CIPN were treated with CNT. The severity of CIPN was evaluated using the Common Terminology Criteria for Adverse Events (CTCAE) ver. 4 and FACT/GOG-Ntx before and after CNT. We also measured oxygen saturation and hemoglobin concentration at the right toe-tip. Correlations among the values were calculated as correlation coefficients. There were significantly improvements in FACT/GOG-Ntx and hemoglobin post-CNT than in pre-CNT (p < 0.05). The oxygen saturation showed broad correlation (0.5 < |r| < 1) with hemoglobin. The oxygen saturation of skin reflects tissue injury and blood stagnation status, and can help in objective evaluation by measuring skin color spectrum. CNT might be considered as one of the safe and effective alternative therapeutic options for CIPN. Our method of evaluation using skin color spectrum information integrates, in a sense, the inspection in Kampo (Japanese traditional medicine) therapy and scientific methodology.
KeywordsJapanese traditional (Kampo) medicine Oxygen saturation Skin color spectrum Chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy (CIPN) Contact needle therapy (CNT) Acupuncture
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