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A literature review was conducted to decide whether acupuncture treatment is more effective in decreasing pain intensity compared to standard pain protocols in geriatric patients experiencing chronic pain. The CINAHL database was used to find nine research studies, from 1999 to 2016, on the topic of acupuncture and chronic pain. The results were inconclusive about whether acupuncture reduces pain intensity. For both chronic neck and back pain, most studies supported the effect of acupuncture in reducing pain intensity, while one study per these categories which suggested no effect. For chronic spinal pain, both studies suggested no significant impact in reducing pain intensity. The findings showed that acupuncture is effective in decreasing …show more content…
The results suggested that there was a lack of consensus about the ideal treatment for chronic pain, but acupuncture is gaining popularity in the Western medicine. Acupuncture is worthwhile for the hospital to implement as an alternative to relieve pain since it has no side effects. The sample size, intervention length, and method of sham acupuncture might contribute to the contradiction of the results. All studies were randomized controlled trials, but most studies had small sample sizes and short study times. Most studies use sham acupuncture to cut placebo effect; however, each study had different standards and technique for sham acupuncture. The sham acupuncture might possibly produce a therapeutic effect and interfere with the result interpretation. For the chronic spinal pain studies, there might be some bias since both studies were conducted by the same researchers and same setting in different years. The results would be stronger if the studies were conducted in different settings and with a different population.
This literature review assessed the current state of research on acupuncture and added new insight to the current understanding of acupuncture. The review revealed that acupuncture might have a different therapeutic effect on different anatomic locations. This review is different from other reviews as it specifically focused on how acupuncture might impact pain intensity using a VAS score. The review explored in-depth about the factors that influence the efficacy of

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