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Acupuncture at local and distal points for chronic shoulder pain: study protocol for a randomized controlled trial.

Research paper by Qing-Nan QN Fu, Guang-Xia GX Shi, Qian-Qian QQ Li, Tian T He, Bao-Zhen BZ Liu, San-Feng SF Sun, Jun J Wang, Cheng C Tan, Bo-Feng BF Yang, Cun-Zhi CZ Liu

Indexed on: 20 Apr '14Published on: 20 Apr '14Published in: Trials



Abstract

Chronic shoulder pain (CSP) is the third most common type of musculoskeletal pain. It has a major impact on health-related quality of life. In Chinese medicine, CSP is considered one of the conditions most amenable to treatment with acupuncture. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the efficacy of local acupoints in combination with distal acupoints in pain relief and shoulder function improvement in CSP patients.This is a multicenter, single blind, factorial randomized controlled clinical trial. A total of 164 participants will be randomly allocated to four different groups: Group A will receive acupuncture at local acupoints in combination with distal acupoint. Group B will receive acupuncture at local acupoints in combination with distal non-acupoint. Group C will receive acupuncture at local non-acupoints in combination with distal acupoint. Group D will receive acupuncture at local non-acupoints in combination with distal non-acupoint. Each group will receive 12 treatments of acupuncture one to three times per week for six weeks in total. The primary outcome is shoulder pain intensity, which is graded using a 100 -mm Visual Analogue Scale. The assessment is at baseline (before treatment initiation), 6 weeks after the first acupuncture, 10 weeks after the first acupuncture and 18 weeks after the first acupuncture.This trial will be helpful in identifying whether acupuncture at local acupoints in combination with distal acupoints may be more effective than needling points separately.International Standard Randomized Controlled Trial Number Register: ISRCTN61861069 (http://www.controlled-trials.com).

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