Acupuncture 'provides twice the pain relief of standard medicine'

  1. Acupuncture is twice as effective at reducing lower back pain than conventional medicines, according to researchers. But pretend acupuncture, where the needles are inserted less deeply, has also been found to have a similar effect, suggesting that the pain relief could be psychological.
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/liv...n_page_id=1774
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  2. 10 Comments

  3. by   elkpark
    Never underestimate the power of the placebo effect! (And I mean that in a good way ... )
  4. by   TheCommuter
    I was suffering from intractible low back and leg pain 2 years ago. I had an L4/L5 injury, which led to spinal claudication. Hence, my right leg became unbearably painful while walking.

    I sought relief by visiting an acupuncture provider, but it provided no relief.
  5. by   zenman
    Quote from elkpark
    Never underestimate the power of the placebo effect! (And I mean that in a good way ... )
    Yes...and we spend so much time and money working on meds for biochem...
  6. by   dancingdoula
    I'd like to read the actual paper this study produced. The notion that not putting needles in deep is "fake acupuncture" sounds strange to me because there are different style of acupuncture that are equally effective. Japanese style does not necessarily put needles in so deep that they cause pain, and what about acupressure which does not break the skin at all??? I have used acupuncture/pressure for many ailments over the years, some treatments worked, some didn't but I always chalked that up to the skill of the practitioner more than anything else. I'm all for the placebo effect however I doubt that millions of people would have continued using acupuncture for thousands of years if it did not hold some merit other than psychological.
  7. by   Jolie
    Quote from HM2Viking
    Acupuncture is twice as effective at reducing lower back pain than conventional medicines, according to researchers. But pretend acupuncture, where the needles are inserted less deeply, has also been found to have a similar effect, suggesting that the pain relief could be psychological.
    http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/liv...n_page_id=1774
    Nothing wrong with "psychological" pain relief! We are taught that "Pain is what the patient says it is." I believe the same should hold true for pain relief. If the patient verbalizes relief, especially with non-pharmalogical measures, I don't care if it is due to the placebo effect.
  8. by   Hellllllo Nurse
    My mom used to work for an acupunturist. Many of his pts were MDs, who said that tradtional medicine did not help their pain, but the acupuncture did.
  9. by   pickledpepperRN
    I don't understand how it works but it does help many people.
    My mother had acupuncture anesthesia for major surgery. She was awake and felt no pain!
  10. by   Pat_Pat RN
    Quote from zenman
    Yes...and we spend so much time and money working on meds for biochem...
    That's because ther is more MONEY in biochem. If they can "pinch, poke" or have someone chew on some herb and cure a problem, it isn't nearly as lucrative as biochem.
  11. by   Josh L.Ac.
    Quote from dancingdoula
    I'd like to read the actual paper this study produced. The notion that not putting needles in deep is "fake acupuncture" sounds strange to me because there are different style of acupuncture that are equally effective. Japanese style does not necessarily put needles in so deep that they cause pain...
    That is teh correct. The people responsible for this study (and others) are the German equivalent of medical acupuncturists, which are basically physicians with 100-300 hours of training. By comparison, my master's degree program was 3700+ hours and I spent almost 200 hours practicing needling of my fellow classmates before I even saw patients.


    If medical acupuncturists had more training, they would realize in this study (and the previous ones) that their treatment protocols need work, their sham treatments aren't always sham treatments, and being a physician does not necessarily make them competent at needling.


    A physician told me that this study showed that when it comes to acupuncture, it doesn't matter where you stick the needles because the outcomes are the same regardless. I replied that when physicians perform the acupuncture and design the treatments, that seems to be the case. :spin:
  12. by   lionrn
    Quote from Josh L.Ac.
    That is teh correct. The people responsible for this study (and others) are the German equivalent of medical acupuncturists, which are basically physicians with 100-300 hours of training. By comparison, my master's degree program was 3700+ hours and I spent almost 200 hours practicing needling of my fellow classmates before I even saw patients.


    If medical acupuncturists had more training, they would realize in this study (and the previous ones) that their treatment protocols need work, their sham treatments aren't always sham treatments, and being a physician does not necessarily make them competent at needling.


    A physician told me that this study showed that when it comes to acupuncture, it doesn't matter where you stick the needles because the outcomes are the same regardless. I replied that when physicians perform the acupuncture and design the treatments, that seems to be the case. :spin:
    Nicely said Josh L.Ac.
    As one of my instructors put it: there's more to treatment than a shi xue (pardon my spelling).

    I went through the first year of acupuncture college before appreciating how difficult it would be for this White Whale from Mars to build a successful practice in San Francisco, so I switched to nursing.

    Like all interventions, responses to treatment vary, less so with increased practitioner skill.

    My dentist offers acupuncture to many of her Pt's, selecting LI 4 as a matter of course.
    Hard to go wrong there, and "spirit gate" is not so convenient for dentistry...

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