Acupuncture in Santa Monica, Los Angeles

Chronic Headaches

Chronic Headaches

Acupuncture of chronic headache disorders in primary care: randomized controlled trial and economic analysis

Sunday May 13, 2012 posted by Anna Brantman, DAOM, LAc

OBJECTIVES: To determine the effects of a policy of using acupuncture compared with a policy of avoiding acupuncture, on headache in primary care patients with chronic headache disorders. The effects of acupuncture on medication use, quality of life, resource use and days off sick in this population and the cost-effectiveness of acupuncture were also examined.

The study included 401 patients with chronic headache disorder, predominantly migraine. Patients were randomly allocated to receive up to 12 acupuncture treatments over 3 months or to a control intervention offering usual care

RESULTS: Headache score at 12 months, the primary end-point, was lower in the acupuncture group than in controls. Patients in the acupuncture group experienced the equivalent of 22 fewer days of headache per year. The data favored acupuncture, although differences reached significance only for physical role functioning, energy and change in health. Compared with controls, patients randomized to acupuncture used 15% less medication, made 25% fewer visits to GPs and took 15% fewer days off sick.

Vickers AJ, Rees RW, Zollman CE, McCarney R, Smith CM, Ellis N, Fisher P, Van Haselen R, Wonderling D, Grieve R

Integrative Medicine Service, Biostatistics Service, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, New York, USA

Health Technol Assess. 2004 Nov;8(48):iii, 1-35

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