Easing the Side Effects of Certain Cancer Treatments
Recently, acupuncture has been in the news as a possible method in helping to reduce or even prevent some of the unpleasant side effects of certain cancer treatments. These treatments usually consist of aromatase inhibitors – frequently used to treat breast cancer – which are known to cause joint pain and stiffness.
A study conducted by researchers at Columbia University and published in Journal of the American Medical Association evaluated the efficacy of acupuncture treatments administered to reduce the pain and stiffness of these inhibitors. During a six-week period, participants were assigned to one of three groups: a true acupuncture group, a sham acupuncture group, and a control group.
At the close of the study, researchers were able to conclude that participants in the true acupuncture group had a statistically significant reduction in their symptoms when compared to participants in the other groups. It can, therefore, be stated that acupuncture is a viable option for counteracting these symptoms, although it should be noted that every patient’s experience is unique.
When considering whether acupuncture might be of benefit to you, it is always advised that you consult with a practitioner who is familiar with treating the condition for which you are seeking treatment and to also discuss your decision with your primary care physician.