The acupuncture treatment of low back pain: a randomized controlled study

Am J Chin Med. Spring-Summer 1980;8(1-2):181-9. doi: 10.1142/s0192415x80000141.


The acupuncture treatment situation was beneficial to the majority of people with low back pain. This was shown by the use of short-term controls and long-term controls, although the latter were not intended in the study design. After acupuncture, there was a 51% pain reduction in the average pain score in the Immediate Treatment Group. The short-term controls, the Delayed Treatment Group, had no reduction whatsoever in their pain scores at the comparable followup period. Later, the Delayed Treatment Group bere also treated by acupuncturists, and reported 62% less pain. When these two treatment groups were compared at 40 weeks with long-term controls (Inadequate Treatment Group), the Inadequate Treatment Group still had the same pain scores, on the average, as when they enrolled in the study. Both treatment groups, on the average, had 30% lower pain scores. Furthermore, 58% of the treatment groups felt that they were definitely improved at 40 weeks, while only 11% of the Inadequate Treatment Group felt definitely improved at 40 weeks.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Acupuncture Therapy*
  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Back Pain / therapy*
  • Clinical Trials as Topic
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Random Allocation
  • Time Factors