The study involved 80 adults who had visited their GP on at least eight occasions during the past year with problems such as muscle pain, extreme tiredness, headaches and back pain.
The patients who participated in the study accounted for 21 patient in-days, 106 outpatient visits 52 hospital visits for counselling, physiotherapy and chiropody, 44 hospital visits for investigations and 75 visits to non-NHS practitioners such as complimentary therapists.
With ‘Medically unexplained’ problems affecting approximately one in five patients, health care providers are always looking for ways to reduce the amount of time and resources used to establish the root of an unexplained problem, so researchers set out to see if acupuncture could be of benefit.
Study leader Professor Andrew Gould split the research group of 80 adults into two, half of whom received up to 12 acupuncture sessions in six months (alongside their conventional medicine), and half who received no extra treatment.
According to the results which were published in the British Journal of General Practice, those who had acupuncture had a ‘significant and sustained’ benefit in their symptoms.
‘We don’t know how acupuncture is making a difference, but it seems to be something to do with the treatment rather than just a placebo or one-to-one care they’re getting.’ Said Gould.
View the original Daily Mail article.