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Effect of acupuncture on Deqi traits and pain intensity in primary dysmenorrhea: analysis of data from a larger randomized controlled trial

Shi, Guang-Xia, Li, Qian-Qian, Liu, Cun-Zhi, Zhu, Jiang, Wang, Lin-Peng, Wang, Jing, Han, Li-Li, Guan, Li-Ping, Wu, Meng-Meng
BMC complementary and alternative medicine 2014 v.14 no.1 pp. 69
acupuncture, hospitals, pain, patients, randomized clinical trials, Massachusetts
BACKGROUND: Deqi is a central concept in traditional Chinese acupuncture. We performed a secondary analysis on data from a larger randomized controlled trial (RCT) in order to assess the effect of acupuncture on deqi traits and pain intensity in primary dysmenorrhea. METHODS: A total of 60 primary dysmenorrhea patients were enrolled and randomly assigned to one of three treatment groups. Acupuncture was given at SP6, GB39 or nonacupoint. Subjective pain was measured by a 100-mm visual analogue scale (VAS) before and after acupuncture. The Massachusetts General Hospital acupuncture sensation scales (MASS) with minor modification was used to rate deqi sensations during acupuncture. RESULTS: The results showed that VAS scores of pain after acupuncture were significantly decreased comparing to before acupuncture treatment in all three groups (P = 0.000). However, no significant differences were found among three groups at the beginning or end of acupuncture treatment (P = 0.928, P = 0.419). CONCLUSIONS: There was no statistical difference among three groups in terms of intensity of deqi feeling. The types of sensation were similar across the groups with only minor differences among them. TRIAL REGISTRATION: Trial registration number: ISRCTN24863192 .