(I'll be talking about this on my show today: listen live by clicking here)
I was bummed because A) I really like acupuncture as a treatment ... and it's use for treating PMS symptoms (I had thought) was pretty convincing!!
B), it's a great, non-invasive way to approach medical conditions, with a methodology that challenges everything we think we think about how our body works.
And C) it avoids throwing drugs at people. Love that.
But then I read further in this article (click here to read) to find out that the title was completely misleading. Grrr. I started getting hot flashes!! Listen to this:
What The Did In The Study
The authors reviewed 10 studies that had tested acupuncture techniques in women with PMS. Those studies compared acupuncture with
- hormonal medications including progestin
- fake acupuncture treatment
- herbal medicines
- or no treatment at all.
What They Found
When the researchers pooled data from those studies, acupuncture was about 50 percent better at improving PMS symptoms than all other treatments combined. The pattern was the same when they looked just at studies that compared acupuncture to contraceptive pills and just at those that tested acupuncture against fake acupuncture.
How These Scientists Disregard A Whopping 50% Improvement
The authors write that the 10 studies looked at a range of acupuncture techniques on different body parts -- including the hand, back, and scalp -- and in at least some of the studies, the "placebo effect" might have come into play if women or their doctors knew they were getting acupuncture treatment and believed it would work.WC: But the comparison of acupuncture vs fake acupuncture controls for that!!
And, they noted, the original study authors didn't always make it clear which specific symptoms had improved, and by how much, in women given acupuncture.
WC: Whatever ... it worked for the symptoms!! That you don't have it broken down into subsegments defined by your definitions ... does NOT make it ineffective.
I just don't get how these authors can disregard a 50% improvement over all other treatment options combined -- just because they don't know WHICH of the PMS symptoms improved. But, even weirder, the authors of this Reuters article emphasize that this HUGE improvement in symptoms is "SHAKY".
Is it hot in here, or is it just me?
Evidence for acupuncture PMS relief is shaky | Reuters
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