Monday, October 30, 2006

Acupuncture cuts arthritis pain; will it work for fibromyalgia?

Post No. 5

Acupuncture eases pain and disability caused by arthritis, a study in Germany has indicated.

The German study, published in Arthritis & Rheumatism, compared the experience of 357 patients given immediate acupuncture with a further 355 whose treatment started three months later.

Benefits were measured on the WOMAC scale, a widely used scale of disease severity which measures pain, stiffness, and how well the joint works. At the start of treatment the patients’ scores on the scale were about 50. After 15 sessions in the first three months, the patients treated with acupuncture had scores of about 30, while the control group still waiting for treatment remained about 50.

Traditionally, German doctors have been far more enthusiastic about alternative treatments than their British counterparts. However, acupuncture is becoming increasingly popular in Britain and many physiotherapy departments in hospitals now offer the services of an acupuncturist.

More at The Times of London

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