[Acupuncture : Basics, practice, and evidence.]

Author: Stör W, Irnich D.
Am Bahnhof, 82057, Icking, Deutschland, stoer@daegfa.de.
Conference/Journal: Anaesthesist.
Date published: 2009 Mar
Other: Volume ID: 58 , Issue ID: 3 , Pages: 311-24 , Special Notes: [Article in German] , Word Count: 120

Acupuncture, which originated with traditional Chinese medicine, has been increasingly used in Western medicine over the last three decades. A huge body of scientific literature reports the physiological and clinical effects of acupuncture. In Germany, about 30,000 physicians apply acupuncture at least occasionally, and German health insurances reimburse acupuncture treatment for chronic low back pain and osteoarthritis of the knee. This overview discusses the most important historical, theoretical, practical, and scientific aspects of acupuncture in general, with a special look at anaesthesia. Regarding anaesthesia, supportive acupuncture treatment is performed for postoperative pain, anxiolysis, and postoperative nausea and vomiting, based on promising results of rigorous randomised trials. However, many unresolved questions remain, such as regarding specificity of concepts, indications, and optimum dose.