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Effects of Transcutaneous Electrical Acupoint Stimulation (TEAS) on Postoperative Recovery in Patients with Gastric Cancer: A Randomized Controlled Trial

Authors Zhou X, Cao SG, Tan XJ, Liu XD, Li ZQ, Kong LX, Tian YL, Liu D, Shen S, Sun YQ, Jiang HT, Zhou YB

Received 17 November 2020

Accepted for publication 14 January 2021

Published 12 February 2021 Volume 2021:13 Pages 1449—1458


Checked for plagiarism Yes

Review by Single anonymous peer review

Peer reviewer comments 3

Editor who approved publication: Dr Chien-Feng Li

Xin Zhou,1 Shou-Gen Cao,1 Xiao-Jie Tan,1 Xiao-Dong Liu,1 Ze-Qun Li,1 Ling-Xin Kong,2 Yu-Long Tian,1 Dan Liu,1 Shuai Shen,1 Yu-Qi Sun,1 Hai-Tao Jiang,1 Yan-Bing Zhou1

1Department of Gastrointestinal Surgery, The Affiliated Hospital of Qingdao University, Qingdao, Shandong Province, People’s Republic of China; 2Department of Rehabilitation, The Affiliated Hospital of Qingdao University, Qingdao, Shandong Province, People’s Republic of China

Correspondence: Yan-Bing Zhou
Department of Gastrointestinal Surgery, The Affiliated Hospital of Qingdao University, No. 16 Jiangsu Road, Shinan District, Qingdao City, Shandong Province, People’s Republic of China
Tel +86-13708971773

Purpose: Transcutaneous electrical acupoint stimulation (TEAS) is an innovative choice for postoperative pain management. However, the safety and effectiveness of this traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) therapy for patients who underwent gastrectomy is largely unknown. So, the purpose of this study is to evaluate the safety and effectiveness of TEAS for patients who underwent gastrectomy.
Patients and Methods: We recruited 96 patients with gastric cancer from May 2019 to November 2019; 82 patients were enrolled, and 81 patients completed. Patients were randomly assigned to TEAS group (TG) received TEAS on postoperative day (POD) 1– 3 or control group (CG) at a 1:1 ratio. The primary outcomes were pain score and consumption of analgesics. The secondary were the time of first postoperative flatus and defecation, frequency of postoperative nausea, vomiting, distention, diarrhea, comfort of semi-fluid diet, Clavien-Dindo grade (C-D grade) and length of postoperative day. We performed hematological analysis to explore the possible mechanisms.
Results: Overall, 81 patients were enrolled included in the analysis. Compared with CG, pain scores in TG were lower on POD 1– 5 (average: 2.55± 0.21 vs 3.10± 0.42, P< 0.001), and the use rate of opioids was lower (43.9 vs 75.0, P=0.004); time of first postoperative flatus (55.63± 16.74 vs 72.60± 20.92, P< 0.001) and defecation (72.20± 16.24 vs 95.78± 17.75, P< 0.001) were shorter; the frequency of nausea were fewer (1.88± 1.09 vs 2.58± 0.77, P=0.029) and patients were more comfortable with semi-fluid diet (7.63± 0.63 vs 6.93± 0.69, P< 0.001); among the hematologic results, β-endorphin (β-End), interleukin-2 (IL-2), motilin (MTL) on POD 3, POD 5 were lower, 5-hydroxytryptamine (5-HT), interleukin-6 (IL-6), tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF-α) were higher. And no adverse event was reported.
Conclusion: TEAS can relieve postoperative pain and promote the recovery of gastrointestinal function. Consequently, it can be an adjunctive therapy to enhance postoperative recovery for patients after gastrectomy.

Keywords: stomach neoplasms, acupuncture therapy, enhanced recovery after surgery, pain management, gastrointestinal function

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