Acupunture Studies for Pain Relief of Chronic Angina What are the main findings?

Response: : 404 participants with chronic stable angina were randomized into four groups –acupuncture on the acupoints on the disease-affected meridian (DAM), acupuncture on the acupoints on the nonaffected meridian (NAM), sham acupuncture (SA) and no acupuncture (wait list (WL)). All participants received antianginal therapies as recommended by the guidelines. Further, participants in the DAM, NAM, and SA groups received acupuncture treatment 3 times weekly for 4 weeks, with a total of 12 sessions. Participants in the WL group did not receive acupuncture during 16- week study period. 
We found that acupuncture on the DAM had superior, and clinically relevant benefits in reducing angina frequency and pain intensity to a greater degree than other groups. And improvements in 6-minute walk distance test, the Canadian Cardiovascular Society, and most of the metrics of the Seattle Angina Questionnaire were also found. What should readers take away from your report?

Response: Acupuncture, as an adjunctive therapy for angina pectoris, is indeed effective, and its acupoint prescription is simple and easily accessible. It has a good application prospect in clinic. What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this work?

²  Further study on the mechanism of acupuncture as an adjuvant therapy for angina pectoris.
²  Further research on some portable and wearable acupoint-stimulation devices to simulate acupuncture for clinical usage. Is there anything else you would like to add?

Response: Disclosures: This trial was supported by grants from the National Natural Science Foundation of China (81590951, 81722050, 81473603), and the State Key Program for Basic Research of China (2012CB518501). The funding sources had no role in the design and implementation of the study, collection management, analysis and interpretation of the data; preparation, review or approval of the manuscript.


Zhao L, Li D, Zheng H, et al. Acupuncture as Adjunctive Therapy for Chronic Stable Angina: A Randomized Clinical Trial. JAMA Intern Med. Published online July 29, 2019. doi:10.1001/jamainternmed.2019.2407

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