Acupuncture: an Alternative to Pain Killers
For nearly three years, Minnesota’s Abbot Northwestern Hospital has been successfully offering acupuncture in the emergency room. Acupuncture is used as part of pain management for conditions ranging from accident injuries to kidney stones. Evidence from a preliminary study suggests that for some patients acupuncture may be able to replace narcotic pain killers entirely. This is great news.
There is growing evidence that narcotics are over-used, leading to an epidemic of addictions and overdose deaths. Using acupuncture in the emergency room is one way to help reduce the epidemic.
Acupuncture Relieves Pain and Anxiety: Positive Research Results
Researchers analyzed data from self-reported pain scores of 182 patients. Preliminary results show that patients treated with acupuncture alone received as much relief from pain and anxiety as those treated with both acupuncture and prescription pain killers. These encouraging results were published in a pilot study in March 2016 in the journal Pain Medicine. A more definitive follow-up study is planned.