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U. of Colorado study shows acupressure effective in helping to treat traumatic brain injury
Date:2/28/2011

the energy blocks, or in this case traffic jams, helps improve flow and overall health."

The study involved 38 study subjects, each of whom was randomly assigned to one of two groups -- an experimental group that received active acupressure treatments from trained experts and a control group that received treatments from the same experts on places on the body that are not considered to be acupressure points, acting as a placebo. The study was "blinded," meaning the researchers collecting data and the study participants themselves did not know who was in the experimental group or the placebo group until the end of the study.

The team used a standard battery of neuropsychological tests to assess the results. In one test known as the Digit Span Test, subjects were asked to repeat strings of numbers after hearing them, in both forward and backward order, to see how many digits they could recall. Those subjects receiving active acupressure treatments showed increased memory function, said Hernandez.

A second standard psychology test used for the study, called the Stroop Task, measured working memory and attention. The test subjects were shown the names of colors like blue, green or red on a computer screen. When the names of the particular colors are viewed on the screen in a different color of ink -- like the word "green" spelled out in blue ink -- test subjects take longer to name the ink color and the results are more error-prone, according to Hernandez. The Stroop Test subjects in the CU-Boulder study wore special caps wired with electrodes to measure the brain activity tied to specific stimuli. The results showed those who received the active acupressure treatments responded to stimuli more rapidly than those who received the placebo treatments, Hernandez said.

"We were looking at synchronized neural activity in response to a stimulus, and our data suggest the brains of those in the active acupressure group responded differe
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Contact: Theresa Hernandez
theresa.hernandez@colorado.edu
303-492-8654
University of Colorado at Boulder
Source:Eurekalert  

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