New research demonstrates that acupuncture is effective for the treatment of chronic lower back pain. Researchers studied back pain patients in an inpatient rehabilitation clinic in Germany. Two groups of patients were compared. Group 1 received acupuncture plus conventional rehabilitation services. Group 2 received only rehabilitation services. The researchers discovered that patients willingly accepted acupuncture as a means of care and showed significant improvements in physical functioning, overall health and energy levels and improvements in emotional well-being over the conventional care only group. Notably, the acupuncture group also demonstrated significant improvements over the conventional care only group in the area of pain reduction.
Acupuncture significantly reduced pain levels and reduced radiculopathy experienced as a prickling sensation in the hands and feet. The acupuncture patients had less pain upon sitting, standing and carrying loads of 10kg or greater. The researchers concluded, “Acupuncture was highly accepted and had positive effects in patients with chronic low back pain. These results show that acupuncture can be an effective, well-tolerated therapy with no major adverse events.”
This research is supported by that of investigators in Calgary (Alberta, Canada). In this study, the researchers discovered that acupuncture is effective for the treatment of lower back pain and is also cost-effective. Patients receiving acupuncture for the treatment of lower back pain required approximately 50% less visits to an M.D. than patients who did not received acupuncture. The investigators discovered, in the course of the study, that patients receiving acupuncture spent 37% less on total medical services. Patients not receiving acupuncture had only a 1% drop in medical expenses for the treatment of lower back pain.
Source: www.healthcmi.com; June 12, 2013.