Objective: Using data mining, the present study aimed to discover the most effective acupoints and combinations in the acupuncture treatment of asthma.
Methods: The main acupoints prescribed in these clinical trials was collected and quantified. A network analysis was performed to uncover the interconnections. Additionally, hierarchical clustering analysis and association rule mining were conducted to discover the potential acupoint combinations.
Results: Feishu (BL13), Dingchuan (EX-B1), Dazhui (GV14), Shengshu (BL23), Pishu (BL20), and Fengmen (BL12) appeared to be the most frequently used acupoints for asthma. While the Bladder Meridian of Foot Taiyang, the Governor Vessel, and the Conception Vessel, compared to other meridians, were found to be the more commonly selected meridians. In the acupoint interconnection network, Feishu (BL13), Fengmen (BL12), Dingchuan (EX-B1), and Dazhui (GV14) were defined as key node acupoints. Association rule mining analysis demonstrated that the combination of Pishu, Shenshu, Feishu, and Dingchuan, as well as that of Feishu, Dazhui, and Fengmen were potential acupoint combinations that should be selected with priority in asthma treatment.
Conclusion: This study provides valuable information regarding the selection of the most effective acupoints and combinations for clinical acupuncture practice and experimental study aimed at the prevention and treatment of asthma.