Researchers have found that acupuncture can be used as an adjunctive therapy to reduce breathlessness in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD). A total of 72 patients with COPD, mean age 67, were randomised to receive either real or sham control acupuncture in thirty minute sessions three times per week for eight weeks. Acupuncture was given in addition to patients’ usual daily medication.
At the end of the trial, six-minute walking distance and health-related quality of life measures had all improved significantly more in the acupuncture group compared with the sham group.
(Acupuncture for chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD): A multicenter, randomized, sham-controlled trial. Medicine (Baltimore), October 2016.)