06/21/2006 - News

Acupuncture helps fibromyalgia

By: Susan Aldridge, medical journalist, PhD


Acupuncture helps fibromyalgia

Reported by Susan Aldridge, PhD, medical journalist

A clinical trial shows that acupuncture improves the symptoms of fibromyalgia.
Fibromyalgia is a painful and disabling disorder characterized by widespread pain, fatigue and joint stiffness. There is no cure and treatments are only partially effective. Now researchers at the Mayo Clinic show that acupuncture can be of great benefit to those with fibromyalgia.

They looked at a group of 50 patients and those who received acupuncture improved significantly compared with those who acted as controls (not receiving acupuncture). This new study is only the third of acupuncture for fibromyalgia. Of the others, one found it to be helpful and the other to be ineffective. All were randomized controlled studies of the kind used to test conventional medicines. This shows you can investigate complementary therapies like acupuncture in this way. The conflicting results suggest maybe bigger trials might be in order – but at least it looks like acupuncture can offer some new hope to people with fibromyalgia.

Mayo Clinic Proceedings

Created on: 06/21/2006
Reviewed on: 06/21/2006

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