Ground-breaking evidence for acupuncture’s effectiveness

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Our acupuncturists Nathan Francis and Margi Macdonald are so excited by last month’s worldwide release of a review of acupuncture research, they felt they had to share the news with you!

This ground-breaking review found evidence for the effectiveness of acupuncture for 117 conditions, with stronger evidence for acupuncture’s effectiveness for some conditions than others. Also, research shows acupuncture is considered safe in the hands of a well-trained practitioner.

Of the 122 conditions identified by the review, strong evidence supported the effectiveness of acupuncture for eight conditions, moderate evidence supported the use of acupuncture for a further 38 conditions, unclear evidence supported the use of acupuncture for 71 conditions, and little or no evidence was found for the effectiveness of acupuncture for five conditions (meaning that further research is needed to clarify the effectiveness of acupuncture in these last two categories).

Advocates of evidence-based healthcare can no longer dispute that acupuncture works.

If you’ve had trouble booking in to see Nathan or Margi in recent times, please know that appointments are a little easier to make these days. Nathan is available on Tuesdays and Thursdays, while Margi is available Wednesdays and every second Friday.

If you don’t need help with the condition that you originally consulted Nathan and Margi about, please read our plain English summary of the acupuncture research review, which is featured below.

If you’d like to know whether acupuncture is appropriate for any condition you might be experiencing, please don’t hesitate to call us on 3342 0010 or email Nathan via nathan(Replace this parenthesis with the @ sign) or Margi via margi(Replace this parenthesis with the @ sign)">margi(Replace this parenthesis with the @ sign) We are more than happy to chat with you.

If you’d like to book in to see Nathan or Margi, click any of the ‘bookings’ or ‘make an appointment’ links in our website (including the one in the menu above), or give us a call on 07 3342 0010.

Acupuncture Evidence Project

Plain-English summary

Available from

Conditions with strong evidence for acupuncture’s effectiveness

Reviews with consistent statistically significant positive effects and where authors have recommended the intervention. The quality of evidence is rated as moderate or high quality.
  • Allergic rhinitis (perennial and seasonal)
  • Chemotherapy-induced nausea and vomiting (with anti-emetics)
  • Chronic low back pain
  • Headache (tension-type and chronic)
  • Knee osteoarthritis
  • Migraine prevention
  • Postoperative nausea and vomiting
  • Postoperative pain


Conditions with moderate evidence for acupuncture’s effectiveness

Reviews reporting all individual randomised control trials or pooled effects across these trials as positive, but the reviewers deeming the evidence insufficient to draw firm conclusions. The quality of evidence is rated as moderate or high quality.
  • Acute low back pain
  • Acute stroke
  • Ambulatory anaesthesia
  • Anxiety
  • Aromatase-inhibitor-induced arthralgia
  • Asthma in adults
  • Back or pelvic pain during pregnancy
  • Cancer pain
  • Cancer-related fatigue
  • Constipation
  • Craniotomy anaesthesia
  • Depression (with antidepressants)
  • Dry eye
  • Hypertension (with medication)
  • Insomnia
  • Irritable bowel syndrome
  • Labour pain
  • Lateral elbow pain
  • Menopausal hot flushes
  • Modulating sensory perception thresholds
  • Neck pain
  • Obesity
  • Perimenopausal and postmenopausal insomnia
  • Plantar heel pain
  • Post-stroke insomnia
  • Post-stroke shoulder pain
  • Post-stroke spasticity
  • Post-traumatic stress disorder
  • Prostatitis pain/chronic pelvic pain syndrome
  • Recovery after colorectal cancer resection
  • Restless leg syndrome
  • Schizophrenia (with antipsychotics)
  • Sciatica
  • Shoulder impingement syndrome (early stage) (with exercise)
  • Shoulder pain
  • Smoking cessation (up to 3 months)
  • Stroke rehabilitation
  • Temporomandibular pain


Conditions with unclear evidence for acupuncture’s effectiveness

Reviews consisted mostly of weak positive evidence or conflicting evidence between reviews or between authors within a review, with reviewers summarising the evidence as inconclusive. Reviews are of low or very low quality; or there are conflicting levels of evidence within or between reviews.
  • Acupuncture in Emergency Department
  • Acute ankle sprain in adult
  • Alzheimer’s disease
  • Angina pectoris
  • Assisted conception in ART
  • Asthma in children
  • Atopic dermatitis
  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)
  • Autism spectrum disorder (ASD)
  • Bell’s palsy
  • Bladder pain syndrome
  • Cancer-related insomnia
  • Cancer-related psychological symptoms
  • Carpal tunnel syndrome
  • Chemotherapy-induced peripheral neuropathy
  • Chronic fatigue syndrome
  • Chronic kidney disease
  • Chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD)
  • Chronic urinary retention due to spinal cord injury
  • Chronic urticaria
  • Dysmenorrhoea
  • Dyspepsia in diabetic gastroparesis (DGP)
  • Erectile dysfunction
  • Exercise performance & post-exercise recovery
  • Fatigue in systemic lupus erythematosus
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Functional dyspepsia
  • Gag reflex in dentistry
  • Glaucoma
  • Heart failure
  • Hot flushes in breast cancer
  • Hyperemesis gravidarum
  • Hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy in neonates
  • Induction of labour
  • Inflammatory bowel disease
  • Itch
  • Lumbar spinal stenosis
  • Melasma
  • Meniere’s disease/syndrome
  • Menopausal syndrome
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Mumps in children
  • Myelosuppression after chemotherapy
  • Oocyte retrieval pain relief
  • Opiate addiction
  • Opioid detoxification
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Polycystic ovarian syndrome
  • Poor sperm quality
  • Postnatal depression
  • Postoperative gastroparesis syndrome (PGS)
  • Postoperative ileus
  • Post-stroke hiccoughs
  • Premenstrual syndrome
  • Primary ovarian insufficiency
  • Primary Sjogren’s syndrome
  • Psoriasis vulgaris
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Slowing progression of myopia
  • Spinal cord injury
  • Stress urinary incontinence in adults
  • Sudden sensorineural hearing loss
  • Surgery analgesia
  • Tinnitus
  • Traumatic brain injury
  • Urinary incontinence
  • Uterine fibroids
  • Vascular cognitive impairment without dementia
  • Vascular dementia
  • Whiplash associated disorder (WAD)
  • Xerostomia in cancer
By |2018-05-23T20:10:48+00:00July 4th, 2017|acupuncture|0 Comments

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