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Chinese researchers have found that acupuncture can improve symptoms in patients with functional dyspepsia (FD). Two hundred patients with refractory FD were randomly assigned to receive 20 sessions of either verum or sham electro-acupuncture (EA) over four weeks. Patients in the verum group were needled at four points; Zusanli ST-36 and Neiguan P-6 (all patients), plus either Taichong LIV-3 and Neiting ST-2 for patients diagnosed with an excess syndrome, or Gongsun SP-4 and Yinlingquan SP-9 for patients with a deficiency syndrome. Patients in the sham group were needled at four sham points. EA stimulation (intermittent 2-100 Hz) was carried out for 30 minutes. Symptom scores showed that verum EA was significantly superior to sham at all timepoints, and the treatment effect of EA persisted for 20 weeks following the end of the four week treatment period. At week 16, 17% of patients in the verum group versus 6% of those in the sham group were completely free of dyspeptic symptoms. 62% of patients reported adequate symptom relief in the verum group, compared with 22% in the sham group.

Electroacupuncture for patients with refractory functional dyspepsia: A randomized controlled trial. Neurogastroenterol Motil. 2018 Feb 28. doi: 10.1111/nmo.13316. [Epub ahead of print].


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