While available evidence is considered insufficient, acupuncture is often used in patients with chronic asthma.
Now a new trial which set out to investigate the effectiveness of acupuncture in addition to routine care in patients with allergic asthma has concluded that such treatments are associated with increased disease-specific and health-related quality of life compared to routine care alone.
A total of 1,445 participants were randomised to receive up to 15 acupuncture sessions over three months or to a control group receiving routine care alone. Patients who did not consent to randomisation received acupuncture treatment for the first three months and were followed as a cohort.
In the randomised group, acupuncture was associated with an improvement in the asthma-related quality of life questionnaire [AQLQ] score compared to the control group, as well as in the physical and mental component scale of the short form-36 [SF-36].
Writing in the Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine (JACM), authors said, considering the results, “acupuncture might be considered as a viable option in the treatment of patients with allergic bronchial asthma”.
They said further studies are urgently needed to investigate the specific effects of acupuncture in allergic asthma.