Acupuncture benefits for chronic pain

This large study of acupuncture for chronic pain in the Journal of Pain analyzed “data received for a total of 20,827 patients from 39 trials” and found:

“Acupuncture was superior to sham as well as no acupuncture control for each pain condition (all P < .001) with differences between groups close to .5 SDs compared with no acupuncture control and close to .2 SDs compared with sham. We also found clear evidence that the effects of acupuncture persist over time with only a small decrease, approximately 15%, in treatment effect at 1 year…Acupuncture is effective for the treatment of chronic musculoskeletal, headache, and osteoarthritis pain. Treatment effects of acupuncture persist over time and cannot be explained solely in terms of placebo effects (emphasis added). Referral for a course of acupuncture treatment is a reasonable option for a patient with chronic pain.”