A large German randomised controlled trial has examined the effectiveness of acupuncture plus routine care, compared to routine care alone, for patients with allergic rhinitis. Over 5200 patients, mean age 40 years, were randomly allocated to receive either 15 acupuncture treatments over three months, or to receive no acupuncture. All were allowed to receive standard medical care. Treatment effectiveness was assessed at the start of the trial, and again at three and six months. Using the criteria of rhinitis symptoms and general quality of life, the researchers conclude that acupuncture for allergic rhinitis in addition to routine care, gives clinically relevant and persistent benefits.
(Acupuncture in patients with allergic rhinitis: a pragmatic randomized trial. Annals of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology, November 2008.)