Labour is a good subject to study the analgesic effects of acupuncture. Our analyses show that the effects of acupuncture perceived by women are largely due to placebo. Acupuncture has many qualities that maximise placebo effects: it involves touch and is invasive and, psychologically, is attached to the mysticism of the East. Our findings are in keeping with much of the recent research on acupuncture which demonstrates that the more one controls for such confounders, the smaller the effect of acupuncture gets.How many more RCTs and reviews will it take before quacks throw in the towel? Unfortunately, they never will however compelling and overwhelming the evidence against their claims are. As James Randi would say, they're unsinkable rubber ducks.
Tuesday, May 04, 2010
Another condition for which acupuncture is useless
A systematic review of ten RCTs for labor pain showed that needling was no better than no intervention, analgesics, or sham acupuncture. Edzard Ernst, one of the co-authors said: