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J Altern Complement Med. 2009 Apr;15(4):391-8. doi: 10.1089/acm.2008.0471.

Impact of acupuncture on vasomotor rhinitis: a randomized placebo-controlled pilot study.

Author information

1
Multidisciplinary Pain Centre, Department of Anaesthesiology, University of Munich, Germany.

Abstract

OBJECTIVES:

Chronic rhinitis without an allergic or infectious etiology (vasomotor rhinitis) is a common disease for which there are only few and not very effective therapeutic treatment options. The current placebo-controlled, partially double-blinded pilot study evaluated the effects of acupuncture on the symptoms of vasomotor rhinitis.

DESIGN:

A total of 24 patients with confirmed diagnosis of vasomotor rhinitis were randomly allocated to either acupuncture or sham laser acupuncture treatment. The sham laser was a deactivated laser pen beaming normal red light. The main outcome measure was the alteration of the nasal sickness score (NSS; score(max) 27 points). Secondary outcome measures were the evaluation of a subjective symptoms score by patients' diaries and of their quality of life (SF-12 health survey). A credibility assessment regarding the respective treatment was performed. The study is registered as an International Standard Randomised Controlled Trial, number NCT00682162.

RESULTS:

NSS of patients treated by acupuncture was significantly reduced from 9.3 +/- 3.89 to 4.1 +/- 3.20 points (p < 0.001), whereas NSS declined from 5.6 +/- 2.74 to 3.7 +/- 2.61 points after sham treatment (p < 0.05). Comparison between the groups revealed a significant change of NSS (Mann-Whitney, p < 0.01), an analysis that also considers the significant difference between the baseline values of both groups (p < 0.05). Secondary outcome measures did not show significant differences between both groups. The credibility assessment was comparable for both treatments.

CONCLUSIONS:

This pilot study showed significant effects of acupuncture compared to a sham treatment in the NSS on symptoms of vasomotor rhinitis. These results may justify the performance of a large randomized trial to strengthen our understanding of the therapeutic value of acupuncture in the treatment of vasomotor rhinitis.

PMID:
19388861
DOI:
10.1089/acm.2008.0471
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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