Research into acupuncture for chronic pelvic pain, shows it is as effective as local anaesthetic injections in reducing symptoms of myofascial pain. A team at the Ribeirao Preto Medical School , University of Sao Paulo, randomly assigned 35 women to receive either acupuncture or local anaesthetic injections. Acupuncture was given once a week for ten weeks. Anaesthetic was given once a week for four weeks. Patients’ pain was evaluated after one week, and at one, three and six months into the study .
Acupuncture was found to be as effective as the anaesthetic injections in reducing pain. The researchers point out however, that whereas adverse events with acupuncture are very rare, long term use of anaesthetics can be associated with neurotoxicity, myotoxicity and sensorimotor deficits.