Even Sham Accupuncture Eases Pain

A new study from the MD Anderson Cancer Center joins the substantial and conflicting literature about the efficacy of acupuncture. It suggests that acupuncture helps to ease knee pain, but that real acupuncture works no better than the insertion of needles at non-accupuncture points. Compared to an untreated group those who received both sham and real acupuncture treatments saw statistically significant declines in perceived pain of about one point on a subjective scale of one to seven. A smaller, but still statistically significant, difference was recorded between those who were treated by practitioners who told patients "I've had a lot of success with treating knee pain" versus those who were told "it may or may not work for you," further suggesting some sort of placebo effect is responsible for the positive effects of acupuncture.

However, the study's methodology may have "blurred the lines between real and fake" according to the New York Times. The "real" acupuncture that was studied involved inserting needles at predefined points, rather than points selected on a pateint-by-patient basis within a predefined area. The "fake" acupuncture was applied by licensed acupuncturists who may have given treatments similar to real acupuncture.
SSDAN Office

No comments :

Post a Comment