Research: KAM and co-worker

Listed in Issue 84


KAM and co-workers performed an audit of the effectiveness of acupuncture for musculoskeletal pain in primary health care.


Musculoskeletal pain is very commonly encountered in general practice, yet little is known of the use of acupuncture for its treatment.


116 patient records were examined. 92 patients met the diagnostic criteria for musculoskeletal pain. Information obtained included age, gender, diagnosis, duration of the problem, length of treatment, number of treatment sessions, duration of each treatment, number of needles used, level of benefit obtained, and recurrence of the pain.


Overall, 69% of patients showed a good or excellent response to acupuncture treatment. There was a tendency for patients to experience greater relief the fewer needles the practitioner used. This could be a reflection of treating myofascial pain syndromes which are known to respond well to a single needle placed at the key trigger point .


The authors recommend acupuncture as a treatment option for patients who do not respond to the usual NSAID therapy.


Kam E, Eslick G, Campbell I. An audit of the effectiveness of acupuncture on musculoskeletal pain in primary health care. Acupuncture in Medicine 20 (1): 35-38, Mar 2002.

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