[Analysis and strategy report on overseas large-scale systematic evaluation on clinical effectiveness of acupuncture].

Author: Li JH, Su YS, Jing XH, Shi H, Chen SL, Zhang L, Jin ZG.
Institute of Acupuncture and Moxibustion, China Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences, Beijing 100700, China.
Conference/Journal: Zhongguo Zhen Jiu.
Date published: 2011 Jul
Other: Volume ID: 31 , Issue ID: 7 , Pages: 665-9 , Special Notes: [Article in Chinese] , Word Count: 287

In recent years, studies of large-scale systematic evaluation on clinical effectiveness of acupuncture were carried out in overseas. The literatures were conducted in Cochrane Library and overseas journals about systematic review of clinical effectiveness of acupuncture. The Cochrane Library contained a series of systematic reviews for the treatment of 67 kinds of diseases by acupuncture in 2009. Preliminary evaluations of clinical effectiveness of acupuncture on 37 kinds of disease were conducted. The results indicated that acupuncture therapy was effective for 7 kinds of disease, such as idiopathic headache, neck disorders, glaucoma, rheumatoid arthritis, chemotherapy-induced nausea or vomiting, primary dysmenorrhoea with TENS and knee osteoarthritis with TENS. However, these studies still need improved research designs and sufficient research evidence. The results also indicated that acupuncture was indecisive for the other 30 kinds of disease because of insufficient evidence. Through analysis, results of most systematic reviews indicated that there were no significant difference between therapeutic effects of acupuncture treatment and pseudo-acupuncture treatment. Effect of acupuncture treatment was equivalent to therapeutic effect of placebo. The likely reasons may be that some important clinical factors are disregarded in these researches, such as selection of acupoints, treatment with syndrome differentiation, the angel and depth of needle insertion, the proper time for treatment and so on. Therefore, the large-scale systematic evaluation on clinical effectiveness of acupuncture was criticized by acupuncturists. Thus, the pressing problem is to establish a rational evaluation system of clinical acupuncture. The suggestions are strengthening the research on diagnosis and treatment standard, strengthening the quality control of clinical acupuncture and establishing sound acupuncture control group and placebo acupuncture group. The basic researches on the relationship between diseases and acupoints need to be strengthened in order to explore the mechanism of acupoints reaction on diseases.

PMID: 21823302