Peripheral facial paralysis (PFP) is a common peripheral neural disease. Acupuncture treatment combined with PFP rehabilitation exercises is a routine method of PFP treatment. This article is to provide a new visual and objective evaluation method for exploring the mechanism and efficacy of acupuncture treatment on PFP, and develop an interactive augmented facial nerve function rehabilitation training system with multiple training models.
This prospective and observational trial will recruit 200 eligible participants for the following study. In the trial, the laser speckle contrast analysis (LASCA) technology will be applied to monitor the microcirculation of facial blood flow during acupuncture, and real-time monitoring algorithms, data sampling, and digital imaging methods will be conducted by machine learning and image segmentation. Then, a database of patient facial expressions will be built, the correlation between surface blood flow perfusion volume and facial structure symmetry will be analyzed, combined with scale assessment and electrophysiological detection. In addition, we will also explore the objectivity and effectiveness of LASCA in the evaluation of facial paralysis (FP), and the changes in blood flow microcirculation before and after acupuncture treatment will be analyzed.
The standard image of the facial target area with facial nerve injury will be manually segmented by the convolutional neural network method. The blood flow images of the eyelid, cheek, and mandible of the patients’ affected and healthy side will be compared and evaluated. Laser speckle blood flow symmetry Pr and its changes in FP condition evolution and prognosis outcome will be measured, and relevant characteristic signals values will be extracted. Finally, COX regression analysis method is conducted to establish a higher accuracy prediction model of FP with cross-validation based on laser speckle blood flow imaging technology.
We use modern interdisciplinary high-tech technologies to explore the mechanism of acupuncture rehabilitation training in PFP. And we will provide evidence for the feasibility of using the LASCA technique as a typing diagnosis of FP in the acupuncture rehabilitation treatment of PFP.

Copyright © 2021 the Author(s). Published by Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc.