While the majority of research in acupuncture focuses on effects in general, this one takes the long view and examines efficacy after 24 months.
Research Shows Long-Term Benefits Of Acupuncture In Relieving Back Pain
September 15, 2006 4:56 p.m. EST
Shaveta Bansal - All Headline News Staff Writer
London, England (AHN) - Research by scientists at University of York in England, has shown that acupuncture can be effective therapy in treating patients suffering from lower back pain and that the benefits seem to improve with time.
Short-term benefits of acupuncture have been long known but to investigate the long-term effects of the therapy, Dr. Hugh MacPherson and his team studied a group of 241 back pain sufferers who underwent a short course of acupuncture.
Patients were divided into two groups: one group was subjected to take 10 acupuncture sessions over three months and the other group underwent the normal treatment for back pain, which included medication, physiotherapy and exercises. The satisfaction and pain levels of both groups were measured and recorded during the two-year study.
After three months there was not too much difference between the acupuncture group and patients who had the standard therapy.
A weak evidence of improvement in the acupuncture group was found at 12 months, according to the study published in the British Medical Journal.
By 24 months the difference between the two groups increased. "If you offer acupuncture to someone with back pain on average it is expected you are likely to benefit, not just in the short term but particularly in the longer-term of 12 and especially 24 months," MacPherson told Reuters in an interview.