Researchers at Wake Forest School of Medicine in North Carolina, have concluded that a course of acupuncture is associated with a significant reduction in menopausal hot flushes and night sweats, plus improvements in quality of life. Clinical benefits persisted for at least six months after treatment ended.
In a pragmatic trial, 209 women were randomised to receive up to 20 acupuncture treatments in either the first 6 months (the acupuncture group) or the second 6 months (the waiting list group). After the initial 6 months, symptom frequency had declined by 36.7% in the acupuncture group, and had increased by 6% in the waiting list group. At the 12 month point ie 6 months after their treatment had ended, the acupuncture group’s symptom reduction remained at 29.4%, suggesting that the reduction was largely maintained after treatment. Statistically significant improvement was observed after three acupuncture treatments, and maximal clinical effects occurred after a median of eight treatments. Persistent improvements were seen in many quality of life-related outcomes in the acupuncture group relative to the control group.
(Acupuncture in Menopause (AIM) study: a pragmatic, randomized controlled trial. Pubmed June 2016.)