Objective: We aim to investigate the efficacy of acupuncture for acute migraine attacks comparing with sham acupuncture.
Design: The study was designed as a multicenter, single-blinded, randomized controlled clinical trial.
Setting and patients: From March 2007 to February 2009, 150 patients were randomly allocated to verum or sham acupuncture group in a ratio of 1:1.
Interventions: Every patient received a verum or sham acupuncture treatment when having a migraine attack and, medications were allowed if the pain failed to be relieved two hours after the acupuncture.
Outcome measures: The primary outcome was visual analog scale (VAS) scores for pain, ranging from 0 (no pain) to 10 (worst pain ever).
Results: The mean VAS scores 24 hours after treatment decreased from 5.7 ± 1.4 to 3.3 ± 2.5 in the verum acupuncture group, and from 5.4 ± 1.3 to 4.7 ± 2.4 in the sham acupuncture group. Significant differences existed between the two groups (P = 0.001).
Conclusions: This trial suggested that verum acupuncture group was superior to sham acupuncture group on relieving pain and reducing the usage of acute medication.
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