Lancet. 1986 Dec 20-27; 2(8521-22): 1416-9.
Controlled trial of acupuncture for disabling breathlessness.
In a randomised controlled trial, twelve matched pairs of patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease received traditional Chinese acupuncture or placebo acupuncture. After three weeks' treatment the traditional-acupuncture group showed significantly greater benefit in terms of subjective scores of breathlessness and six-minute walking distance. Objective measures of lung function were unchanged in either group. Whether these differences are mediated by endogenous opiate and/or peptide release remains speculative.