Acupunct Med 28:101-103 doi:10.1136/aim.2009.002204
  • Letter

Acupuncture for symptomatic relief of gastroparesis in a diabetic haemodialysis patient

  1. Sun Mi Choi
  1. Acupuncture, Moxibustion and Meridian Research Center, Korea Institute of Oriental Medicine, Daejeon, Korea
  1. Correspondence to Dr Kun Hyung Kim, Acupuncture, Moxibustion and Meridian Research Center, Korea Institute of Oriental Medicine, Daejeon 305-811, South Korea; pdchrist{at}
  • Published Online First 13 May 2010


In this report, we present the case of a diabetic haemodialysis patient with refractory gastroparesis treated with 16 sessions of acupuncture through 8 weeks as an adjunct to conventional drug treatment including prokinetics and antiemetics which remained the same during the treatment course. After the treatment, the total Gastroparesis Cardinal Symptom Index (GCSI) score (range 0–5) was reduced from 2.4 to 0.6 and half gastric emptying time measured by gastric scintigraphy with a solid meal was decreased from 135 to 93 min. At a 4-month follow-up after treatment, the patient reported complete reduction of subjective symptoms. We suggest that acupuncture may be an acceptable adjunct to the comprehensive care of gastroparesis in diabetic haemodialysis patients.

Case history

A 51-year-old man was referred to the acupuncture research centre with frequent nausea, vomiting and lack of appetite. His medical history showed that he had been diagnosed with type II diabetes and hypertension 19 and 10 years ago, respectively. He had been engaged in regular haemodialysis as a form of renal replacement therapy at a local haemodialysis centre for 9 months. His gastric symptoms initially started 5 months after haemodialysis; thus, prokinetics (dopamine D2-receptor antagonists, including domperidone 10 mg three times daily and metoclopramide 5 mg three times daily) and antiemetics (histamine H1-receptor antagonists, including dimenhydrinate 50 mg three times daily) were prescribed by the doctor in the haemodialysis centre. …