Acupuncture effectively reduces acute post-op pain

November 14th, 2007 - 2:23 am ICT by admin  
According to Duke University Medical Center anaesthesiologists, who combined data from 15 small-randomized acupuncture clinical trials, using acupuncture before and during surgery considerably eases the level of pain and the amount of potent painkillers needed by patients after the surgery is over.

Currently up to 80 percent of patients experience pain after surgery, with about 86 percent of these patients reporting moderate, severe or extreme discomfort.

The researchers reviewed 15 research studies pertaining to the effectiveness of acupuncture and related techniques to relieve postoperative pain when used in conjunction with pain medication.

The data analysis of some 1,166 patients revealed a significant decrease in pain among the patients receiving acupuncture. In addition, the acupuncture patients required less morphine and other opioid pain medication, and thus reported fewer medication-related side effects, including nausea, dizziness and drowsiness.

“While the amount of opioids needed for patients who received acupuncture was much lower than those who did not have acupuncture, the most important outcome for the patient is the reduction of the side effects associated with opioids,” said lead author Tong Joo (T.J.) Gan, M.D.

“These side effects can negatively impact a patient’s recovery from surgery and lengthen the time spent in the hospital,” he added.

Gan further said that his team’s findings add to the growing body of evidence that acupuncture can play an effective role in improving the quality of the surgical experience.

“Acupuncture is slowly becoming more accepted by American physicians, but it is still underutilized. Studies like this, which show that there is a benefit to using it, should help give physicians sitting on the fence the data they need to integrate acupuncture into their routine care of surgery patients,” he said.

Acupuncture has the added benefits of being inexpensive, with virtually no side effects, when done by properly trained personnel, he added. (ANI)

Related Stories

Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Posted in Health |