Acupuncture has been used to increase circulation for centuries. The techniques inherent in the practice of acupuncture stimulate sympathetic responses causing blood vessel dilatation and increased blood flow. This is most notable in the periphery where increased blood flow can be seen. It also occurs internally to maximise nutrient transport and waste removal in the internal organs.
Usually a symptom in older people. This is a symptom in which due to poor circulation the muscles of the lower extremity, particularly the calf muscles, cramp due to lack of blood flow and therefore oxygen to the tissues as well as a build up of lactic acid which is produced secondary to normal use. The acupuncture increases the blood flow for removal of the lactic acid and a restoration of the oxygen to the tissues.
One of the more studied applications of acupuncture is the treatment of hypertension. By decreasing both muscular stresses and vascular tone the body has the ability to decrease both systolic and diastolic pressures. This happens both acutely in the immediate treatment session and is also possible to physically retrain the body to remain at lower blood pressures despite ongoing stresses. Studies to date have indicated that patients receiving appropriate acupuncture intervention will hold lowered blood pressure at 6 months and 1 year after acupuncture has been stopped.