Attending frequently with medically unexplained symptoms is distressing for both patient and health care practitioner and effective treatment options are limited: One in five patients have symptoms that remain unexplained by conventional medicine. A new study examines traditional acupuncture as a treatment for people with unexplained symptoms.
The study from the Institute of Health Services Research, University of Exeter, assessed 80 such patients to investigate their experiences of having five-element acupuncture added to their usual care. Findings indicate that acupuncture has a significant and sustained benefit for these patients and can be added safely to conventional therapies used by practitioners to treat patients with unexplained symptoms.
Patients were divided into a group receiving 12 acupuncture treatments over 26 weeks or a group which received the same number of treatments beginning 26 weeks later. The acupuncture group reported a significantly improved health survey score compared to those not receiving acupuncture immediately. The acupuncture group maintained their improvement up to 52 weeks, and the second group, now receiving acupuncture, showed a ‘catch-up’ improvement.
Participating patients had a variety of longstanding symptoms including chronic pain and fatigue. Patients reported that their acupuncture consultations became increasingly valuable, and that they appreciated the holistic nature of the sessions.
As a result many patients were encouraged to take an active role in their treatment, resulting in cognitive and behavioral lifestyle changes, such as a new self-awareness about what caused stress and how to manage it, and taking their own initiatives based on advice from their acupuncturists about diet, exercise and relaxation.
Benefits of acupuncture:
• Reduced dependency on medication.
• Increased energy.
• Balanced mental-emotional states.
• Reduced fatigue.
Acupuncture & Massage College’s Community Clinic offers acupuncture, massage therapy and herbal medicine for the treatment of a wide range of health conditions as well as for overall wellness. To schedule an appointment call (305) 595-9500. For information about AMC’s Oriental Medicine and Massage Therapy programs ask for Joe Calareso, Admissions Director.