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A Korean pilot study suggests that acupuncture results in clinically meaningful improvements for patients with functional constipation (FC). Thirty participants with FC were randomly assigned to either real acupuncture (bilateral Tianshu ST-25, Daju ST-27, Zhishi BL-52 and Dachangshu BL-25, plus and four additional individualised points) or sham acupuncture (shallow needle insertion at 12 non-acupuncture points). Twelve sessions were provided over four weeks. Real acupuncture, but not sham, showed clinically meaningful improvements in terms of increased frequency of bowel movements (to more than three times per week) and these improvements were maintained for four weeks after treatment completion.

Efficacy and safety of acupuncture for functional constipation: a randomised, sham-controlled pilot trial. BMC Complement Altern Med. 2018 Jun 15;18(1):186.

 

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