Rewiring the brain with acupuncture

– does sophisticated MRI data point us to optimal treatment? This blog was first published on 25th January 2018 on https://blogs.bmj.com/aim/ For some time, a group on the US east coast have been quietly scanning brains with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) and related techniques to examine the effects of acupuncture. They hit the headlines in … Continue reading Rewiring the brain with acupuncture

EA for stress urinary incontinence

– perhaps via direct pudendal nerve stimulation This blog was first published on 4th December 2017 on https://blogs.bmj.com/aim/ Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com Earlier in 2017 this paper popped up in JAMA.[1] It was from the same group that had published a huge multicentre trial of electroacupuncture (EA) for chronic severe functional constipation,[2] which was featured … Continue reading EA for stress urinary incontinence

The Acupuncture Trialists’ Collaboration IPDM update 2017

– more data, new insights... This blog was first published on 29th December 2017 on https://blogs.bmj.com/aim/ In 2012, the first individual patient data meta-analysis (IPDM) in the field of acupuncture was published.[1] It was also one of the first in the field of pain research. It was a struggle to publish, principally (I guess) because the … Continue reading The Acupuncture Trialists’ Collaboration IPDM update 2017

EA for chronic severe functional constipation

– it seems to work after an intensive course... This blog was first published on 28th November 2017 on https://blogs.bmj.com/aim/ Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com About a year ago I was surprised to see a sham controlled RCT of electroacupuncture (EA) published in Annals of Internal Medicine.[1] I was surprised for several reasons: I review for … Continue reading EA for chronic severe functional constipation

Segmental EA falls short in ovulation induction

…in women with polycystic ovarian syndrome (PCOS) This blog was first published on 18th November 2017 on https://blogs.bmj.com/aim/ Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com Finally I have come to address this topic, some months following publication of an eagerly awaited (at least by me) large clinical trial.[1] I have been a colleague and friend of the second … Continue reading Segmental EA falls short in ovulation induction

Burning nerves with needles in back pain – stop the burning, just use the needles!

This blog was first published on 27th July 2017 on https://blogs.bmj.com/aim/ I subsequently attended the Spanish Pain Society conference (#SEDPalma2018) and there was a whole session devoted to this paper and why it did not apply to the way these specialists used the technique :-/. This piece has also been stimulated by a publication in JAMA, … Continue reading Burning nerves with needles in back pain – stop the burning, just use the needles!

Why not needles for OA – no steroid, just the needles!

This blog was first published on 30th May 2017 on https://blogs.bmj.com/aim/ This piece has been stimulated by a recent publication in JAMA evaluating the use of regular intra-articular corticosteroid injections for symptom management and cartilage volume in osteoarthritis (OA) of the knee.[1] Previous research had suggested that the inflammatory process in the knee was associated with … Continue reading Why not needles for OA – no steroid, just the needles!

TENS and acupuncture appear cost-effective in knee osteoarthritis

This blog was first published on 9th March 2017 on https://blogs.bmj.com/aim/ Figure 3 from Woods B et al PLoS One 2017[1] This figure may seem familiar to some who follow big data in the acupuncture field. It comes from another big project at the Centre for Health Economics, University of York.[1] It is effectively a repeat … Continue reading TENS and acupuncture appear cost-effective in knee osteoarthritis

Precision needling in myofascial pain

This blog was first published on 9th February 2017 on https://blogs.bmj.com/aim/ Inspired by Wang et al Acupunct Med 2017 [1] Image taken from Cummings M Acupunct Med 2009 [2] I got interested in swapping my hypodermic needles for filiform ones some 25 years ago, and was encouraged by my early success treating myofascial pain in a … Continue reading Precision needling in myofascial pain

Too NICE – there appears to be a glaring orthodox bias in NG59

This blog was first published on 30th Novenber 2016 on https://blogs.bmj.com/aim/ When the draft clinical guideline for low back pain & sciatica was published in February 2016, it was with some resignation that I noted the 2009 recommendation in CG88 for acupuncture in low back pain (from 6 weeks to 1 year)[1] had been dropped. It … Continue reading Too NICE – there appears to be a glaring orthodox bias in NG59