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Acupuncture reduces hot flashes for menopausal women

The frequency of hot flashes can be reduced by almost half for about 50% of women over 8 weeks of acupuncture treatment, according to scientists at Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center who conducted the US government funded study. The results of the study was published in the Sept. 28 issue of the journal Menopause.

“Women bothered by hot flashes and night sweats may want to give acupuncture a try as a relatively low-cost, low-risk treatment,” said Dr. Nancy Avis, lead author of the study and professor of Public Health Sciences at Wake Forest School of Medicine. “Women will know pretty quickly if acupuncture will work for them. Women who had a reduction in their hot flashes saw a benefit beginning after about 3 to 4 weeks of weekly treatments.

The study was designed to examine different patterns of responses to acupuncture. Participants included 209 perimenopausal and postmenopausal women ages 45 to 60 who had on average at least four hot flashes or night sweats per day. Women were randomized to receive up to 20 acupuncture treatments within six months or to a control group. Of the 170 women who received acupuncture, a small group of women (11.9%) had an 85% reduction in hot flashes by the 8th week of the study. Forty-seven percent of the study group reported a 47% reduction over the same period.

News source:
Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center
Journal reference:
Nancy E. Avis, Remy R. Coeytaux, Beverly Levine, Scott Isom, Timothy Morgan. Trajectories of response to acupuncture for menopausal vasomotor symptoms. Menopause 2016; 1 DOI: 10.1097/GME.0000000000000735

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