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January 2022

Acupuncture in the treatment of stroke patients in the subacute stage: a randomized, controlled study

Author(s): Kjendahl, A., Osten, P., Stanghelle, J., Borchgrevink, C.

Journal/Book: Complementary Therapies in Medicine. 1996; 4: 193-197.

Abstract: The aim of the present study was to investigate whether acupuncture treatment, in addition to standard stroke rehabilitation, given to stroke patients in the subacute stage over a period of six weeks, would influence motor function, activity of daily life and quality of life. After obtaining informed consent, 45 patients (median age 57 years) were randomized into a control group (n = 21) and an acupuncture group (n = 24). Time from stroke onset to inclusion in the study was median 40 days. lnclusion criteria was hemiparesis following a first-ever stroke. When included, and six weeks later-, all Patents were evaluated with the Motor Assessment Scale for stroke patients, Sunnaas Index of' ADL and Nottingham Health Profile.All patients underwent a comprehensive, multi-disciplinary, individually adapted rehabilitation program. The patients in the acupuncture group were additionally diagnosed according to traditional Chinese 'medicine, and classical acupuncture was given for 30 minutes 3-4 times weekly for 6 weeks.Both groups improved significantly in motor function and activity of daily life. However, the acupuncture group improved significantly more, and only the acupuncture group rated a significantly improved quality of life. Our results indicate that acupuncture treatment gives an additive therapeutic benefit when given to stroke patients during their rehabilitation program in the subacute phase.


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