Aromatase inhibitor therapy is a commonly used treatment for breast cancer and is known to cause stiffness and joint pain, a side effect of the oestrogen blockage. Researchers in the US have been looking for a non drug option to try to alleviate the joint issues and have found acupuncture to be a great success.
The researchers randomly assigned 43 women to receive ether true or placebo acupuncture twice a week for a six week period, all of whom were receiving aromatase inhibitor treatment for the early stages of breast cancer and all of whom were experiencing significant joint pain.
The results showed that those who received the true acupuncture had experienced a significant improvement in their joint pain with 20% reporting they had been able to give up pain relief medications completely after treatment. Those who had received placebo acupuncture experienced no such results.
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