Volume 11 Issue 77
High hopes and great expectations when going into any endeavor probably offers the best potential to bring about the most positive results. According to a recent study published in the journal called Pain, this is certainly true in the case of Acupuncture.
Actual Acupuncture was compared to sham (minimal Acupuncture) treatment in the cases of 864 persons involved in four different clinical trials. The study was conducted by Klause Linde and colleagues from the Centre for Complementary Medicine Research of Munich, Germany.
Patients were asked the following two questions before receiving three treatments. How effective do you consider Acupuncture in general? What do you personally expect from the Acupuncture treatment you will receive? After the three treatments, the participants were also asked: How confident do you feel that this treatment can alleviate your complaint?
Analysis of patient responses showed the following according to researchers: “In our four randomized trails, patients with high expectations were more likely to report better outcomes than patients with lower expectations, both after treatment and four months later.”
Interestingly, the sham Acupuncture recipients did show greater improvements if their expectations were high as well. “The effect was observed both in patients receiving the “true’ and the minimal Acupuncture,” the researchers said.
Further examinations lead the researchers to speculate that perhaps a nurturing environment helps to foster this positive attitude. “Intense and frequent provider-patient interaction, touch, needling pain, and an ‘exotic’ framework could make Acupuncture a strong ‘ritual’ which is associated with stronger expectation effects than other interventions.”
The findings clearly emphasized that fostering a positive patient attitude toward Acupuncture and Chinese medicine can have a pronounced influence on clinical results. If patients understand and appreciate Chinese healing, that alone might contribute to enhanced results as much as the actual Acupuncture procedure, said the researchers.
Source: Acupuncture Today. 2007 http://www.acupuncturetoday.com/mpacms/at/article.php?id=31536