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Evid Based Dent. 2011;12(3):89. doi: 10.1038/sj.ebd.6400816.

Limited evidence that acupuncture is effective for treating temporomandibular disorders.

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1
Clinic for Reconstructive Dentistry and Temporomandibular Disorders, Dental School, University of Basel, Switzerland.

Abstract

DATA SOURCES:

Medline, PubMed, The Cochrane Library 2010, CINAHL, Embase, seven Korean Medical Databases and a Chinese Medical Database (China Academic Journal, www.cnki.co.kr).

STUDY SELECTION:

Parallel or cross-over RCTs that assessed the efficacy of acupuncture regardless of blinding, language and type of reporting published in English, Chinese and Korean were included. Dissertations and abstracts were included provided they contained sufficient detail. Complex interventions in which acupuncture was not a sole treatment and studies with no reported clinical data were excluded.

DATA EXTRACTION AND SYNTHESIS:

All RCTs were obtained and read in full by two independent reviewers and data extracted according to pre-defined criteria. Quality was assessed using the Cochrane risk of bias criteria. Meta-analysis was conducted using random effect models if excessive statistical heterogeneity did not exist. Additional subgroup analysis or sensitivity analysis additionally was conducted to explore heterogeneity. Publication bias was assessed by funnel plot using the Cochrane software.

RESULTS:

Seven RCTs (including 141 patients) met our inclusion criteria. Six studies comparatively tested needle acupuncture against penetrating sham acupuncture, non-penetrating sham acupuncture or sham laser acupuncture, whilst the remaining study tested laser acupuncture against sham laser acupuncture. Five studies were considered to be at low risk of bias. Outcomes were reported for pain intensity, facial pain, muscle tenderness and mouth opening.

CONCLUSIONS:

This systematic review produced limited evidence that acupuncture is more effective than sham acupuncture in alleviating pain and masseter muscle tenderness in TMD. Further rigorous studies are, however, required to establish beyond doubt whether acupuncture has therapeutic value for this indication.

PMID:
21979775
DOI:
10.1038/sj.ebd.6400816
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