Acupuncture for chronic shoulder pain

Chronic shoulder pain is a prevalent form of musculoskeletal pain. It is commonly caused by conditions such as rotator cuff strain or tear, biceps tendinitis, subacromial bursitis, glenohumeral osteoarthritis, impingement syndrome, and adhesive capsulitis.

Acupuncture has been identified as a safe and effective therapy for treating chronic shoulder pain. A randomized trial conducted in Germany involved 424 outpatients who suffered from chronic shoulder pain for more than six weeks. The study showed that acupuncture significantly reduced shoulder pain and improved shoulder movement at three months post-treatment and immediately after the end of treatment.

In another clinical trial, researchers studied the effects of acupuncture on shoulder pain in patients aged 25 to 83 years. Six months after treatment, the acupuncture group showed a significantly greater improvement in pain intensity compared to the control group. This suggests that acupuncture can provide effective long-term relief for patients with shoulder pain.

Research has also investigated the effectiveness of specific acupuncture points for treating shoulder pain. Some points have been found to be more effective than others.

Overall, acupuncture offers a promising treatment option for individuals with chronic shoulder pain. Its safety and effectiveness have been demonstrated in several clinical trials, and further research could help identify the most effective acupuncture points for treating this condition.

Jaung-Geng Lin, et al Am J Transl Res. 2022; 14(3): 1469–1481.
Albrecht F Molsberger et al Pain 2010 Oct;151(1):146-154.
Juan Antonio Guerra de Hoyos et al Pain 2004 Dec;112(3):289-298.
Itoh K et al J Acupunct Meridian Stud. 2014;7:59–64.
Wang KF et al A systematic review of randomized controlled trials. Chin J Integr Med. 2016;22:467–472.

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