Acupuncture and postoperative vomiting in day-stay paediatric patients

Anaesth Intensive Care. 1996 Dec;24(6):674-7. doi: 10.1177/0310057X9602400607.


The stimulation of the acupuncture point P6 has been used to prevent nausea and vomiting in the adult population. It has, however, been subject to limited comparative evaluation in children. We proposed that stimulation of P6 and the analgesic point Li4 would reduce the incidence of postoperative vomiting. Eighty-four unpremedicated paediatric patients having day-stay surgery (circumcision or herniotomy/orchidopexy) were included in a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study of transcutaneous stimulation of P6 and Li4, or no stimulation. The incidence of vomiting was recorded for 24 hours postoperatively. There was no statistically significant difference in total postoperative vomiting in those patients who were stimulated, compared with the control group (P = 0.909), or between any group for postoperative vomiting in the recovery ward, day-stay ward or at home. For all groups, vomiting was more common within the first four hours and more likely to occur in the day-stay ward.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial

MeSH terms

  • Acupuncture Points
  • Adolescent
  • Ambulatory Surgical Procedures*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Circumcision, Male
  • Cryptorchidism / surgery
  • Double-Blind Method
  • Electroacupuncture*
  • Female
  • Hernia, Inguinal / surgery
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Male
  • Postoperative Complications / prevention & control*
  • Vomiting / etiology
  • Vomiting / prevention & control*