WHO Official Position on Acupuncture

 

WHO acupuncture effectiveness

In 2003 the World Health Organization (WHO) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) released a report called “Acupuncture: Review and Analysis of Reports on Controlled Clinical Trials.”

The WHO’s 87-page report specifically listed 28 diseases, symptoms or conditions for which acupuncture has been proven through controlled trials to be an effective treatment. Nearly 100 more conditions were reported by controlled trials to have some therapeutic benefits, and we can expect that as more research emerges, we will see further verification of the effectiveness of acupuncture.

Below you will see a list of the conditions mentioned in that report.

Musculo-skeletal Conditions

  • Arthritis
  • Muscle pain, swelling, stiffness and weakness
  • Localized traumatic injuries, sprains, strains, tendinitis, contractures
  • Work and sports related injuries
  • Low back and/or neck strain
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Osteoarthritis
  • Frozen shoulder
  • Tennis elbow
  • Sciatica

Neurological Conditions

  • Headache and migraine
  • Trigeminal neuralgia
  • Facial palsy (early stage, within three to six months)
  • Paresis following stroke
  • Peripheral neuropathy
  • Meniere’s Disease
  • Nocturnal enuresis
  • Cervicobrachial syndrome
  • Neurogenic bladder dysfunction
  • Intercostal neuralgia
  • Disc problems

Psychological Conditions

  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Insomnia
  • Hypersomnia
  • OCD
  • PTSD
  • Somatization disorder

 

Respiratory System Conditions

  • Acute sinusitis
  • Acute rhinitis
  • Common cold and allergies
  • Acute tonsillitis
  • Acute bronchitis
  • Bronchial asthma

Conditions of the Eye, Ear, Nose & Mouth

  • Acute conjunctivitis
  • Central retinitis
  • Myopia (in children)
  • Cataract (without complications)
  • Toothaches, post extraction pain
  • Gingivitis
  • Acute and chronic pharyngitis

Gastrointestinal Conditions

  • Spasms of esophagus and cardiac
  • Irritable bowel and colitis
  • Gastroptosis
  • Acute and chronic gastritis
  • Gastric hyperacidity (acid reflux)
  • Chronic duodenal ulcer (pain relief)
  • Acute duodenal ulcer (without complication)
  • Acute and chronic colitis
  • Constipation
  • Diarrhea
  • Acute bacillary dysentery
  • Paralytic ileus

Gynecological Conditions

  • Infertility
  • PMS
  • Dysmenorrhea (painful menstruation)
  • Menopause syndrome
  • Benign irregular menstruation
  • Benign amenorrhea (absence of menses)

Cardiovascular Conditions

  • Essential hypertension

Other Conditions

  • Withdrawal from street and pharmacological drugs
  • Appetite suppression

“Acupuncture could serve as a valuable alternative treatment for many diseases or conditions for which modern conventional treatments are unsuccessful. It is also valuable in situations where the patient is frightened of the potential risks or adverse effects of modern conventional treatments. In fact, in some developed countries, the diseases for which patients seek help from acupuncturists tend to be beyond the scope of orthodox medicine.” ~ Acupuncture: Review and Analysis of Reports on Controlled Clinical Trials, WHO publication

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