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Complement Ther Clin Pract. 2007 Nov;13(4):250-7. Epub 2007 Aug 6.

Ear acupuncture for hot flushes--the perceptions of women with breast cancer.

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Supportive Oncology Research Team, Lynda Jackson Macmillan Centre, Mount Vernon Hospital, Northwood, Middlesex HA6 2RN, UK.


Hot flushes and night sweats are a major problem for women having adjuvant hormonal treatment for breast cancer. We explored using a standardised ear acupuncture protocol delivered in small group clinics as an option to manage these side effects. Qualitative research aimed to elicit the opinions of women who received this treatment. Sixteen women took part in three focus groups, and discussed a range of topics including reasons for joining the study, experience of having acupuncture, effects of the treatment, the possible reasons for these, and their experience of group treatments. Transcripts of the groups were analysed using grounded techniques. The women, who had all been experiencing chronic multiple flushes and sweats, found the acupuncture helpful and relaxing. Many reported reductions in hot flush frequency, as well as improvements in overall emotional and physical well being. The group setting for treatment was regarded as supportive and encouraging.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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