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Chin Med. 2010 Aug 5;5:28. doi: 10.1186/1749-8546-5-28.

Effects of moxibustion for constipation treatment: a systematic review of randomized controlled trials.

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Division of Standard Research, Korea Institute of Oriental Medicine, Daejeon 305-811, South Korea.


Several studies reported that moxibustion was effective in treating constipation. This systematic review assesses the clinical evidence for or against moxibustion for treating constipation. Twelve databases were searched from their inception to March 2010. Only randomized clinical trials (RCTs) were included if they compared moxibustion with placebo, sham treatment, drug therapy or no treatment. The methodological quality of these RCTs was assessed with the Cochrane risk of bias analysis. All three RCTs included in the study had a high risk of bias. Two included studies found favorable effects of moxibustion. The third RCT showed significant effects in the moxibustion group. Given that the methodological quality of all RCTs was poor, the results from the present review are insufficient to suggest that moxibustion is an effective treatment for constipation. More rigorous studies are warranted.

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