Does Acupuncture Have a Place as an Adjunct Treatment During Pregnancy? A Review of Randomized Controlled Trials and Systematic Reviews
ABSTRACT Complementary medicine has become popular throughout many Western countries and is widely used by women across all stages of their life cycle. Acupuncture is used by women during their pregnancy, and research suggests that acupuncture may be used as an adjunct to their existing conventional care. The aim of this paper was to summarize the evidence examining the effectiveness of acupuncture during pregnancy and birthing, and to discuss its role as an adjunct treatment.
We conducted a systematic literature search using several electronic databases. We included all placebo-controlled randomized trials of parallel design, and systematic reviews that evaluated the role of acupuncture during pregnancy and birthing. A critical appraisal of clinical trials and systematic reviews was undertaken.
The summarized findings indicated a small but growing body of acupuncture research, with some evidence suggesting a benefit from acupuncture to treat nausea in pregnancy. Findings from the review also highlighted promising evidence for the effectiveness of acupuncture to manage back and pelvic pain, acupuncture-type interventions to induce change in breech presentation, and pain relief in labor. The methodological quality of recent trials has improved, and the quality of systematic reviews was high.
Interest is growing in the use of acupuncture to treat some complaints during pregnancy and childbirth, and evidence is beginning to consolidate that acupuncture may assist with the management of some complaints during pregnancy. However, definitive conclusions about its effectiveness cannot be reached and further research is justified.
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ABSTRACT: Expectations for treatment have been associated with outcomes. Expectations in acupuncture treatment have rarely been addressed, and due to the unique concerns of pregnancy and childbirth, obstetric patients merit special attention.07/2014; 3(4):14-19. DOI:10.7453/gahmj.2013.086
Article: Third Stage of Labor and Acupuncture[Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Background: Acupuncture use in obstetrics has been increasing in Western medicine, especially to alleviate complications of pregnancy, the most important cause of maternal mortality worldwide. One quarter of maternal deaths are caused by complications in the third stage of labor, an interval between complete delivery of the baby and the complete expulsion of the placenta. Methods: This review analyzes the increased acupuncture use for pregnancy complications as a potential method of reducting maternal mortality during the third stage of labor. This overview focuses on acupuncture points and techniques to manage the third stage of labor and help patients with retained placentas. Passive (or expectant) management of the third stage of labor is occasionally associated with massive obstetric hemorrhage, a major cause of maternal morbidity and mortality, especially in low-income countries. Conclusions: Active management of the third stage of labor has been shown to reduce the risk of postpartum hemorrhage. Use of acupuncture in the first and second stages of labor could lead to a faster separation of the placenta in the third stage of labor. The possible effects of acupuncture in cases of retained placentas may have significant implications for possible complications and final outcomes of labor. Further studies are needed for more conclusive results.Medical Acupuncture 02/2015; 27(1):150209113947003. DOI:10.1089/acu.2014.1079
Obstetric Anesthesia Digest 01/2010; 30(4):238. DOI:10.1097/01.aoa.0000389618.03414.70