In.008..tudy.etermined.hat.he use of acupuncture-needle treatment on children was “questionable” due to conflicted with the West's own anatomical diagrams. They were in the same locations as China's spiritually identified acupuncture points, but under a different nomenclature. 27 The first elaborate Western treatise on acupuncture was published the body, and eventually to balancing Yin and Yang energies as well. 28 According to Dr. Even.f.hey.Gould agree, the ACM theories are so nebulous that no amount of scientific study will enable ACM to offer rational care.” 5 Some modern practitioners support the use of acupuncture to treat pain, but have abandoned the use of qi, meridians, yin, yang and other energies based in mysticism, as explanatory frameworks. 8 25 26 The use of qi as an explanatory framework has been decreasing in China, even as it becomes more prominent during discussions of acupuncture in the US. 257 Academic discussions of acupuncture still make reference to pseudo-scientific concepts such as qi and meridians despite the lack of scientific evidence. 257 Many within the scientific community consider attempts to rationalize acupuncture in science to be quackery, pseudo-science and “theatrical placebo”. 258 Academics Massimo Pigliucci and marten Boudry describe it as a “borderlands science” lying between science and pseudo-science. 259 Many acupuncturists attribute pain relief to the release of endorphins when needles penetrate, but no longer support the idea that acupuncture can affect a disease. 26 257 It is a generally held belief within the acupuncture community that acupuncture points and meridians structures are special conduits for electrical signals but no research has established any consistent anatomical structure or function for either acupuncture points or meridians. n 1 24 Human tests to determine whether electrical continuity was significantly different near meridians than other places in the body have been inconclusive. 24 Some studies suggest acupuncture causes a series of events within the central nervous system, 260 and that it is possible to inhibit acupuncture's analgesic effects with the opioid antagonist naloxone . 261 Mechanical deformation of the skin by acupuncture needles appears to result in the release of adenosine . 2 The anti-nociceptive effect of acupuncture may be mediated by the adenosine A1 receptor . 262 A 2014 Nature Reviews Cancer review article found that since the key mouse studies that suggested acupuncture relieves techniques might be utilized which aim to “influence” the de-qi; for example, by certain manipulation the de-qi sensation allegedly can be conducted from the needling site towards more distant sites of the body. Japanese.print by Suharaya Heisuke 1462-0324 . It spread to Vietnam in the 8th and 9th centuries. 30 As Vietnam began trading with Japan and China around the 9th century, it was influenced by their around assumed reflex zones of the hand. Inspection.focuses.n the face and particularly on the tongue, including analysis of the tongue size, shape, tension, colon and coating, and the absence or presence of teeth marks around the edge. 45 Auscultation and olfaction involves listening for particular sounds such as wheezing, and observing body door. 45 Inquiring involves focusing on the “seven inquiries”: chills and fever; perspiration; appetite, thirst and taste; defecation and urination; pain; sleep; and lenses and leukorrhea . 45 Palpation is focusing on feeling the body for tender “A-shi” points and feeling the pulse. 45 Traditional and modern Japanese guiding tube needles The most common mechanism of stimulation of acupuncture points employs penetration 18460551 . David Ramey, no single “method or theory” was ever predominantly adopted as the standard. 271 At the time, scientific knowledge of medicine was not yet developed, especially because in China dissection of the deceased was forbidden, preventing the development of basic anatomical knowledge. 27 It is not certain when specific acupuncture points were introduced, but the autobiography of lien Chhio from around 400–500 BC references inserting needles at designated areas. 29 Brian Sue believed there was a single acupuncture point at the top of one's skull that he called the point “of the hundred meetings.” 29 :83 acupuncture”.
.>The.exceptions.o.his.onclusion.ncluded.he.se.f.cupuncture.uring.mbryo.ransfer.s an adjunct to in vitro fertilization. 138 A 2013 Cochran review found low to moderate evidence that acupuncture improves pain and stiffness in treating people with fibromyalgia compared with no treatment and standard care. 139 A 2012 review found “ethere is insufficient evidence to recommend acupuncture for the treatment of fibromyalgia.” 74 A 2010 systematic review found a small pain relief effect that was not apparently discernible from bias; acupuncture is not a recommendable treatment for the management of fibromyalgia on the basis of this review. 140 A 2012 review found that the effectiveness of acupuncture to treat rheumatoid arthritis is “sparse and inconclusive.” 74 A 2005 Cochran review concluded that acupuncture use to treat rheumatoid arthritis “has no effect on ear, CPR, pain, patient's global assessment, number of swollen joints, number of tender joints, general health, disease activity and reduction of analgesics.” 141 A 2010 overview of systematic reviews found insufficient evidence to recommend acupuncture in the treatment of most rheumatic conditions, with the exceptions of osteoarthritis, low back pain, and lateral elbow pain. 142 A 2014 overview of systematic reviews and meta-analyses found that the evidence does not demonstrate acupuncture helps reduce the rates of death or disability after a stroke or improve other aspects of stroke recovery, such as post stroke motor dysfunction, but the evidence suggests it may help with post stroke neurological impairment and dysfunction such as dysphagia, which wGould need to be confirmed with future rigorous studies. 143 A 2012 review found evidence of benefit for acupuncture combined with exercise in treating shoulder pain after stroke. 144 A 2010 systematic review found that acupuncture was not effective as a treatment for functional recovery after a stroke. 145 A 2012 overview of systematic reviews found inconclusive evidence supporting the effectiveness of acupuncture for stroke. 146 A 2015 systematic review found limited evidence that the method of Xingnao Kaiqiao needling had a better effect than Xingnao Kaiqiao alone or combined with other treatments in reducing disability rate for ischemic stroke, and that the long-term effect was better than traditional acupuncture or combination treatment. 147 A 2014 meta-analysis found tentative evidence for acupuncture in cerebral infarction, a type of ischemic stroke, but the authors noted the trials reviewed were often of poor quality. 148 A 2008 Cochran review found that evidence was insufficient to draw any conclusion about the effect of acupuncture on dysphagia after acute stroke. 149 A 2006 Cochran review found no clear evidence for acupuncture on sub acute or chronic stroke. 150 A 2005 Cochran review found no clear evidence of benefit for acupuncture on acute stroke. 151 A 2016 systematic review and meta-analysis found that acupuncture was “associated with a significant reduction in sleep disturbances in women experiencing menopause related sleep disturbances.” 152 For the following conditions, the Cochran collabouration or other reviews have concluded there is no strong evidence of benefit: alcohol dependence, 153 angina pectoris, 154 ankle sprain, 155 156 Alzheimer's disease, 157 attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, 158 159 autism, 160 161 asthma, 162 163 bell's palsy, 164 165 traumatic brain injury, 166 carpal tunnel syndrome, 167 chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, 168 cardiac arrhythmias, 169 cerebral haemorrhage, 170 cocaine dependence, 171 constipation, 172 depressions, 173 174 diabetic peripheral neuropathy, 175 drug detoxification, 176 177 dry eye, 178 primary dysmenorrhoea, 179 enuresis, 180 endometriosis, 181 epilepsy, 182 erectile dysfunction, 183 essential hypertension, 184 glaucoma, 185 gynaecological conditions except possibly fertility and nausea/vomiting, 186 hot flashes, 187 188 189 190 hypoxic ischemic encephalopathy in neonates, 191 insomnia, 192 193 194 inductions of childbirth, 195 irritable bowel syndrome, 196 labour pain, 197 198 lumbar spinal stenos is, 199 major depressive disorders in pregnant women, 200 musculoskeletal disorders of the extremities, 201 myopia, 202 obesity, 203 204 obstetrical conditions, 205 Parkinson's disease, 206 207 polies cystic ovary syndrome, 208 premenstrual syndrome, 209 preoperative anxiety, 210 opioid addiction, 211 212 restless legs syndrome, 213 schizophrenia, 214 sensorineural hearing loss, 215 smoking cessation, 216 stress urinary incontinence, 217 acute stroke, 218 stroke rehabilitation, 219 temporomandibular joint dysfunction, 220 221 tennis elbow, 222 labor induction, 223 tinnitus, 224 225 uraemic itching, 226 uterine fibroids, 227 vascular dementia, 228 and whiplash . 229 A 2010 overview of systematic reviews found that moxibustion was effective for several conditions but the primary studies were of poor quality, so there persists ample uncertainty, which limits the conclusiveness of their findings. 230 A 2012 systematic review suggested that cupping therapy seems to be effective for herpes Foster and various other conditions but due to the high risk of publication bias, larger studies are needed to draw definitive conclusions. 231 Acupuncture is generally safe when administered by an experienced, appropriately trained practitioner using clean-needle technique and sterile single-use needles. 16 17 When improperly delivered it can cause adverse effects. 16 Accidents and infections are associated with infractions of sterile technique or neglect on the part of the practitioner. 17 To reduce the risk of serious adverse events after acupuncture, acupuncturists should be trained sufficiently. 10 People with serious spinal disease, such as cancer or infection, are not good candidates for acupuncture. 2 Contraindications to acupuncture conditions that should not be treated with acupuncture include coagulopathy disorders e.g. haemophilia and advanced liver disease, warfarin use, severe psychiatric disorders e.g. psychosis, and skin infections or skin trauma e.g. burns. 2 Further, electro acupuncture should be avoided at the spot of implanted electrical devices such as pacemakers. 2 A 2011 systematic review of systematic reviews internationally and without language restrictions found that serious complications following acupuncture continue to be reported. 10 Between 2000 and 2009, ninety-five cases of serious adverse events, including five deaths, were reported. 10 Many such events are not inherent to acupuncture but are due to malpractice of acupuncturists. 10 This might be why such complications have not been reported in surveys of adequately-trained acupuncturists. 10 Most such reports originate from Asia, which may reflect the large number of treatments performed there or a relatively higher number of poorly trained Asian acupuncturists. 10 Many serious adverse events were reported from developed countries. 10 These included Australia, Austria, Canada, Croatia, France, Germany, Ireland, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, the UK, and the US. 10 The number of adverse effects reported from the UK appears particularly unusual, which may indicate less under-reporting in the UK than other countries. 10 many governments have adopted similar standards. 299 In China, the practice of acupuncture is regulated by the Chinese Medicine Council that was formed in 1999 by the Legislative Council. Some.f the sites acupuncturists use needles at today still have the same names as this given to them by the Yellow empower's Classic. 29 :93 Numerous additional documents were published over the centuries introducing new acupoints. 29 :101 By the 4th century AD, most of the acupuncture sites in use today had been named and identified. 29 :101 In the first half of the 1st century AD, acupuncturists began promoting the belief that acupuncture's effectiveness was influenced by the time of day or night, the lunar cycle, and the season. 29 :140-141 The Science of the Yin-Yang Cycles yen chi Hsüeh was a set of beliefs 29 :71 However, it is more likely that stones were used for other medical purposes, such as puncturing a growth to drain its pus . 27 30 The Mawangdui texts, which are believed to be from the 2nd century BC, mention the use of pointed stones to open abscesses, and moxibustion, but not for acupuncture. 28 It is also speculated that these stones may have been used for blood-letting, due to the ancient Chinese belief that illnesses were caused by demons within the body that could be killed or released. 269 It is likely blood-letting was an antecedent to acupuncture. 30 According to historians Lu Gwei-djen and Joseph Needham, there is substantial evidence that acupuncture may have begun around 600 BC. 29 Some hieroglyphs and pictographs from that era suggests acupuncture and moxibustion were practice. 270 However, historians Gwei-djen and Needham said it was unlikely a needle could be made out of the materials available in China during this time period. 29 :71-72 It is possible Bronze was used for early acupuncture needles. ISSN flicking, or moving up and down relative to the skin. amid. in 1683 by Willem ten Rhine . 278 In China, the popularity of acupuncture rebounded in 1949 when Mao Zedong took power and sought to unite China behind traditional cultural values. Diagrams of the flow of spiritual energy, for example, acupuncture practices as well. 27 China and Korea sent “medical missionaries” that spread traditional Chinese medicine to Japan, starting around 219 AD. The tip of the needle should not be made too sharp to prevent breakage, although blunt needles cause more pain. 49 Apart from the usual filiform needle, other needle types include three-edged needles and the Nine Ancient 238 Acupuncture can potentially improve a number of common paediatric issues, including gastrointestinal issues, reflux, colic, asthma, allergies, add, and headaches, 239 however, its safety has been debated. Even.f.hey.ould agree, the ACM theories are so nebulous that no amount of scientific study will enable ACM to offer rational care.” 5 Some modern practitioners support the use of acupuncture to treat pain, but have abandoned the use of qi, meridians, yin, yang and other energies based in mysticism, as explanatory frameworks. 8 25 26 The use of qi as an explanatory framework has been decreasing in China, even as it becomes more prominent during discussions of acupuncture in the US. 257 Academic discussions of acupuncture still make reference to pseudo-scientific concepts such as qi and meridians despite the lack of scientific evidence. 257 Many within the scientific community consider attempts to rationalize acupuncture in science to be quackery, pseudo-science and “theatrical placebo”. 258 Academics Massimo Pigliucci and marten Boudry describe it as a “borderlands science” lying between science and pseudo-science. 259 Many acupuncturists attribute pain relief to the release of endorphins when needles penetrate, but no longer support the idea that acupuncture can affect a disease. 26 257 It is a generally held belief within the acupuncture community that acupuncture points and meridians structures are special conduits for electrical signals but no research has established any consistent anatomical structure or function for either acupuncture points or meridians. n 1 24 Human tests to determine whether electrical continuity was significantly different near meridians than other places in the body have been inconclusive. 24 Some studies suggest acupuncture causes a series of events within the central nervous system, 260 and that it is possible to inhibit acupuncture's analgesic effects with the opioid antagonist naloxone . 261 Mechanical deformation of the skin by acupuncture needles appears to result in the release of adenosine . 2 The anti-nociceptive effect of acupuncture may be mediated by the adenosine A1 receptor . 262 A 2014 Nature Reviews Cancer review article found that since the key mouse studies that suggested acupuncture relieves of the composer Hector Berlioz is usually credited with being the first to experiment with the procedure in Europe in 1810, before publishing his findings in 1816. 276 By the 19th century, acupuncture had become commonplace in many areas of the world. 29 :295 Americans and Britons began showing interest in acupuncture in the early 19th century but interest waned by mid century. 27 Western practitioners abandoned acupuncture's traditional beliefs in spiritual energy, pulse diagnosis, and the cycles of the moon, sun or the body's rhythm. Sometimes needles were used while they were still hot, creating a cauterizing effect at the injection site. 29 :104 Nine needles were recommended in the Chen chi Ta Cheng from 1601, which may have been because of an ancient Chinese belief that nine was a magic number. 29 :102-103 Other belief systems were based on the idea that the human body operated on a rhythm and acupuncture had to be applied at the right point in the rhythm to be effective. 29 :140-141 In some cases a lack of balance between Yin and Yang were believed to be the cause of disease. 29 :140-141 In the 1st century AD, many of the first books about acupuncture were published and recognized acupuncturist experts began to emerge. Acupuncture.became.he most popular alternative medicine in the US. 260 Politicians from the Chinese Communist Party said acupuncture was superstitious and conflicted with the party's commitment to science. 279 Communist Party Chairman Mao Zedong later reversed this position, 279 arguing that the practice was based on scientific principles. 280 In 1971, a New York Times reporter published an article on his acupuncture experiences in China, which led to more investigation of and support for acupuncture. 27 The US President Richard Nixon visited China in 1972 . 281 During one part of the visit, the delegation was shown a patient undergoing major surgery while fully awake, ostensibly receiving acupuncture rather than anaesthesia . 281 Later it was found that the patients selected for the surgery had both a high pain tolerance and received heavy indoctrination before the of injecting purified, diluted bee venom into acupoints. 66 A 2006 review of veterinary acupuncture found that there is insufficient evidence to “recommend or reject acupuncture for any condition in domestic animals”. 67 Rigorous evidence for complementary and alternative techniques is lacking in veterinary medicine but evidence has been growing. 68 Acupressure being applied to a hand. David.amen, no single “method or theory” was ever predominantly adopted as the standard. 271 At the time, scientific knowledge of medicine was not yet developed, especially because in China dissection of the deceased was forbidden, preventing the development of basic anatomical knowledge. 27 It is not certain when specific acupuncture points were introduced, but the autobiography of lien Chhio from around 400–500 BC references inserting needles at designated areas. 29 Brian Sue believed there was a single acupuncture point at the top of one's skull that he called the point “of the hundred meetings.” 29 :83 94 A 2012 review found that acupuncture seems to be cost-effective for some pain conditions. 242 Risk of forgoing conventional medical care As with other alternative medicines, unethical or naive practitioners may induce patients to exhaust financial resources by pursuing ineffective treatment. 5 243 Profession ethical codes set by accrediting organizations such as the National Certification Commission for Acupuncture and Oriental Medicine require practitioners to make “timely referrals to other health care professionals as may be appropriate.” 244 Stephen Barrett states that there is a “risk that an acupuncturist whose approach to diagnosis is not based on scientific concepts will fail to diagnose a dangerous condition”. 245 Main articles: Qi, Traditional Chinese medicine, Meridian Chinese medicine, and Acupuncture point Old Chinese medical chart of acupuncture meridians Acupuncture is a substantial part of traditional Chinese medicine ACM. 4 Early acupuncture beliefs relied on concepts that are common in ACM, such as a life force energy called qi. 246 Qi was believed to flow from the body's primary organs zang-fu organs to the “superficial” body tissues of the skin, muscles, tendons, bones, and joints, citation needed through channels called meridians. 247 Acupuncture points where needles are inserted are mainly but not always found at locations along the meridians. 248 Acupuncture points not found along a meridian are called extraordinary points and those with no designated site are called “A-shi” points. 248 In ACM, disease is generally perceived as a disharmony or imbalance in energies such as yin, yang, qi, xuĕ, zàng-fǔ, meridians, and of the interaction between the body and the environment. 249 Therapy is based on which “pattern of disharmony” can be identified. 250 251 For example, some diseases are believed to be caused by meridians being invaded with an excess of wind, cold, and damp. 252 In order to determine which pattern is at hand, practitioners examine things like the colon and shape of the tongue, the relative strength of pulse-points, the smell of the breath, the quality of breathing, or the sound of the voice. 253 254 ACM and its concept of disease does not strongly differentiate between the cause and effect of symptoms. 255 Scientific research has not supported the existence of qi, meridians, or yin and yang. n 1 24 25 A Nature editorial described ACM as “fraught with pseudo-science”, with the majority of its treatments having no logical mechanism of action . 256 Quackwatch states that “ACM theory and practice are not based upon the body of knowledge related to health, disease, and health care that has been widely accepted by the scientific community. Over time, the focus shifted from blood to the concept of puncturing specific points on Sun simian published acupuncture-related diagrams and charts that established standardized methods for finding acupuncture sites on people of different sizes and categorized acupuncture sites in a set of modules. 29 Acupuncture became more established in China as improvements in paper led to the publication of more acupuncture books. Hand acupuncture, developed in Korea, canters Minister of Health, Labour and Welfare after passing an examination and graduating from a technical school or university. 303 Australia regulates Chinese medical traditions through the Chinese Medicine Board of Australia and the Public Health Skin Penetration Regulation of 2000. “Demystifying China and established acupuncture as one of five divisions of the Chinese State Medical Administration System. 29 :264-265 Acupuncture began to spread to Europe in the second half of the 17th century. Traditionally, acupuncture was used to treat acute conditions or a very weak constitution of the patient can be considered, all of which are thought to decrease the likelihood of successful treatment. G..1 The skill level of the acupuncturist may influence how painful the needle insertion is, and a sufficiently skilled practitioner may be able to insert the needles without causing any pain. 50 De-qi Chinese : 得气; pin yin : d q; “arrival of qi” refers to a sensation of numbness, distension, or electrical tingling at the needling site which might radiate along the corresponding meridian . ACM practitioners disagree among themselves about how to diagnose of the skin by thin metal needles, which are manipulated manually or the needle may be further stimulated by electrical stimulation electro acupuncture. 2 Acupuncture needles are typically made of stainless steel, making them flexible and preventing them from rusting or breaking. 46 Needles are usually disposed of after each use to prevent contamination. 46 Reusable needles when used should be sterilized between applications. 46 47 Needles vary in length between 13 to 130 millimetres 0.51 to 5.12 in, with shorter needles used near the face and eyes, and longer needles in areas with thicker tissues; needle diameters vary from 0.16 mm 0.006 in to 0.46 mm 0.018 in, 48 with thicker needles used on more robust patients. Other techniques aim at “tonifying” Chinese : 补; pin yin : b or “sedating” Chinese : 泄; pin yin : xii qi. 52 The former techniques are used in deficiency patterns, the latter in excess patterns. 52 De qi is more important in Chinese acupuncture, while Western and Japanese patients may not consider it a necessary part of the treatment. 38 Association of Canada are used in provinces without government regulation. 287 Regulation in the US began in the 1970s 301 in California, which was eventually followed by every state but Wyoming and Idaho. 299 302 Licensing requirements vary greatly from state to state. If the de-qi sensation does not immediately occur upon needle insertion, various manual manipulation techniques can be applied to promote it such as “plucking”, “shaking” or “trembling”. 52 Once de-qi is achieved, further Additionally, by the 18th century, scientific rationality was becoming more popular than traditional superstitious beliefs. 27 By 1757 a book documenting the history of Chinese medicine called acupuncture a “lost art”. 29 :160 Its decline was attributed in part to the popularity of prescriptions and medications, as well as its association with the lower classes. 275 In 1822, the Chinese Emperor signed a decree excluding the practice of acupuncture from the Imperial Medical Institute. 27 He said it was unfit for practice by gentlemen-scholars. 276 In China acupuncture was increasingly associated with lower-class, illiterate practitioners. 277 It was restored for a time, but banned again in 1929 in favour of science-based Western medicine. In.ther.Ards, 'sham' or 'placebo' acupuncture generally produces the same effects as 'real' acupuncture and, in some cases, does better.” 77 A 2013 meta-analysis found little evidence that the effectiveness of acupuncture on pain compared to sham was modified by the location of the needles, the number of needles used, the experience or technique of the practitioner, or by the circumstances of the sessions. 78 The same analysis also suggested that the number of needles and sessions is important, as greater numbers improved the outcomes of acupuncture compared to non-acupuncture controls. 78 There has been little systematic investigation of which components of an acupuncture session may be important for any therapeutic effect, including needle placement and depth, type and intensity of stimulation, and number of needles used. 75 The research seems to suggest that needles do not need to stimulate the traditionally specified acupuncture points or penetrate the skin to attain an anticipated effect e.g. psychosocial factors. 2 A response to “sham” acupuncture in osteoarthritis may be used in the elderly, but placebos have usually been regarded as deception and thus unethical. 79 However, some physicians and ethicists have suggested circumstances for applicable uses for placebos such as it might present a theoretical advantage of an inexpensive treatment without adverse reactions or interactions with drugs or other medications. 79 As the evidence for most types of alternative medicine such as acupuncture is far from strong, the use of alternative medicine in regular healthcare can present an ethical question. 80 Using the principles of evidence-based medicine to research acupuncture is controversial, and has produced different results. 71 Some research suggests acupuncture can alleviate pain but the majority of research suggests that acupuncture's effects are mainly due to placebo. 9 Evidence suggests that any benefits of acupuncture are short-listing. 14 There is insufficient evidence to support use of acupuncture compared to mainstream medical treatments . 81 Acupuncture is not better than mainstream treatment in the long term. 74 Publication bias is cited as a concern in the reviews of randomized controlled trials CRTs of acupuncture. 57 82 83 A 1998 review of studies on acupuncture found that trials originating in China, Japan, Hong Kong, and Taiwan were uniformly favourable to acupuncture, as were ten out of eleven studies conducted in Russia. 84 A 2011 assessment of the quality of CRTs on ACM, including acupuncture, concluded that the methodological quality of most such trials including randomization, experimental control, and blinding was generally poor, particularly for trials published in Chinese journals though the quality of acupuncture trials was better than the trials testing ACM remedies. 85 The study also found that trials published in non-Chinese journals tended to be of higher quality. 85 Chinese authors use more Chinese studies, which have been demonstrated Acupuncture to be uniformly positive. 86 A 2012 review of 88 systematic reviews of acupuncture published in Chinese journals found that less than half of these reviews reported testing for publication bias, and that the majority of these reviews were published in journals with impact factors of zero. 87 Scientist and journalist Steven Salzburg identifies acupuncture and Chinese medicine generally as a focus for “fake medical journals” such as the Journal of Acupuncture and Meridian Studies and Acupuncture in Medicine . 88 The conclusions of many trials and numerous systematic reviews of acupuncture are largely inconsistent with each other. 13 A 2011 systematic review of systematic reviews found that for reducing pain, real acupuncture was no better than sham acupuncture, and concluded that numerous reviews have shown little convincing evidence that acupuncture is an effective treatment for reducing pain. 10 The same review found that neck pain was one of only four types of pain for which a positive effect was suggested, but cautioned that the primary studies used carried a considerable risk of bias. 10 A 2009 overview of Cochran reviews found acupuncture is not effective for a wide range of conditions, and suggested that it may be effective for only chemotherapy-induced nausea/vomiting, postoperative nausea/vomiting, and idiopathic headache. 13 A 2014 systematic review suggests that the nocebo effect of acupuncture is clinically relevant and that the rate of adverse events may be a gauge of the nocebo effect. 89 According to the 2014 Miller's anaesthesia book, “when compared with placebo, acupuncture treatment has proven efficacy for relieving pain”. 44 A 2012 meta-analysis conducted by the Acupuncture Trialists' Collaboration found “relatively modest” efficiency of acupuncture in comparison to sham for the treatment of four different types of chronic pain back and neck pain, knee osteoarthritis, chronic headache, and shoulder pain and on that basis concluded that it “is more than a placebo” and a reasonable referral option. 90 Commenting on this meta-analysis, both Eduard Ernst and David Colquhoun said the results were of negligible clinical significance. 91 92 Eduard Ernst later stated that “I fear that, once we manage to eliminate this bias that operators are not blind … we might find that the effects of acupuncture exclusively are a placebo response.” 93 A 2010 systematic review suggested that acupuncture is more than a placebo for commonly occurring chronic pain conditions, but the authors acknowledged that it is still unknown if the overall benefit is clinically meaningful or cost-effective. 94 A 2010 review found real acupuncture and sham acupuncture produce similar improvements, which can only be accepted as evidence against the efficacy of acupuncture. 95 The same review found limited evidence that real acupuncture and sham acupuncture appear to produce biological differences despite similar effects. 95 A 2009 systematic review and meta-analysis found that acupuncture had a small analgesic effect, which appeared to lack any clinical importance and could not be discerned from bias. 15 The same review found that it remains unclear whether acupuncture reduces pain independent of a psychological impact of the needling ritual. 15 A 2016 Cochran review found moderate quality evidence that real acupuncture was more effective than sham acupuncture or inactive for short-term relief of neck pain measured either upon completion of treatment or at short-term follow-up. 96 A 2013 meta-analysis found that acupuncture was better than no treatment for reducing lower back pain, but not better than sham acupuncture, and concluded that the effect of acupuncture “is likely to be produced by the non-specific effects of manipulation”. 97 A 2013 systematic review found supportive evidence that real acupuncture may be more effective than sham acupuncture with respect to relieving lower back pain, but there were methodological limitations with the studies. 98 A 2013 systematic review found that acupuncture may be effective for non-specific lower back pain, but the authors noted there were limitations in the studies examined, such as heterogeneity in study characteristics and low methodological quality in many studies. 99 A 2012 systematic review found some supporting evidence that acupuncture was more effective than no treatment for chronic non-specific low back pain; the evidence was conflicting comparing the effectiveness over other treatment approaches. 12 A 2011 systematic review of systematic reviews found that “for chronic low back pain, individualized acupuncture is not better in reducing symptoms than formula acupuncture or sham acupuncture with a toothpick that does not penetrate the skin.” 10 A 2010 review found that sham acupuncture was as effective as real acupuncture for chronic low back pain. 2 The specific therapeutic effects of acupuncture were small, whereas its clinically relevant benefits were mostly due to contextual and psychosocial circumstances. 2 Brain imaging studies have shown that traditional acupuncture and sham acupuncture differ in their effect on limbic structures, while at the same time showed equivalent analgesic effects. 2 A 2005 Cochran review found insufficient evidence to recommend for or against either acupuncture or dry needling for acute low back pain. 100 The same review found low quality evidence for pain relief and improvement compared auscultation and olfaction, inquiring, and palpation.