Acupuncture and traditional Chinese medicine for hot flushes in menopause: a randomized trial

J Altern Complement Med. 2014 Jul;20(7):550-7. doi: 10.1089/acm.2012.0499. Epub 2014 May 14.


Objective: To evaluate the effect of acupuncture on hot flushes and other menopause-related symptoms used in an integrated system, including such therapeutic techniques as diet therapy and Tuina self-massage.

Design: Randomized trial.

Setting: Outpatient center.

Participants: One hundred women in spontaneous menopause with at least three episodes of hot flushes daily were randomly allocated to two treatment groups (50 per group): Women in group A were given diet, self-massage training, and treatment with acupuncture, and women in group B (the control group) were given the same diet and self-massage training, but treatment with acupuncture started 6 weeks after they were enrolled into the study.

Intervention: Acupuncture treatments were scheduled twice weekly for 6 consecutive weeks.

Outcome measures: Mean change in frequency and/or intensity in menopause-related symptoms were estimated by questionnaire after treatment at week 4.

Results: Treatment with acupuncture significantly reduced the occurrence of hot flushes and sudden sweating (p<.001). Other symptoms (sleep disorders, tightness in the chest, irritability, bone pain, feeling depressed) significantly improved.

Conclusions: Acupuncture in an integrated system that includes therapeutic techniques such as diet therapy and Tuina self-massage can be used to treat hot flushes and selected symptoms in postmenopausal women.

Publication types

  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Acupuncture Therapy*
  • Diet Therapy
  • Female
  • Hot Flashes / physiopathology
  • Hot Flashes / psychology
  • Hot Flashes / therapy*
  • Humans
  • Massage*
  • Medicine, Chinese Traditional / methods*
  • Menopause / physiology*
  • Menopause / psychology*
  • Middle Aged
  • Self Care
  • Surveys and Questionnaires