Acupuncture is thought to influence physiological functions via the nervous system, and especially by promoting blood circulation Nervous system disorders, including various paralytic diseases, such as stroke, traumatic paraplegia, and progressive myodystrophies, are treated by acupuncture in China for many hundred years.
It is thought that promoting the microcirculation (capillary bed circulation) to the spinal cord can enhance the natural regenerative capabilities that exist. From the traditional medicine point of view, acupuncture can open the blocked meridians, including the one running through the spinal column known as the dumai or governing vessel (du = govern, supervise, direct; mai = channel, vessel, meridian).
Whether neurons are damaged by physical trauma, blocked circulation of blood (as occurs in stroke), or by biochemical processes (e.g., oxidation reactions, excess glutamate), the principle of treatment via acupuncture remains the same.
One technique is especially relevant to central nervous system diseases: spinal acupuncture. involve treatments on or along side the governing vessel, which runs up the spine to the head, running over the center of the scalp.