U.S. Health Agency Says Yoga, Acupuncture Effective Painkillers

      September 05, 2016 10:57

      The U.S. National Institutes of Health has accepted the effectiveness of nondrug approaches for treating common pain conditions. These complementary health approaches, including acupuncture and yoga, have long been disregarded by the mainstream medical community.

      In the latest issue of Mayo Clinic Proceedings, the NIH said, "Some of the most popular complementary health approaches -- such as yoga, tai chi, and acupuncture -- appear to be effective tools for helping to manage common pain conditions." 

      A group of NIH researchers randomly selected 105 controlled trials relevant to pain patients and conducted in the U.S. between 1966 and 2016. They reviewed the results of clinical trials involving more than 16,000 subjects who were treated for five painful conditions -- back pain, osteoarthritis, neck pain, fibromyalgia, and severe headaches and migraine.

      The review found that acupuncture and yoga were particularly effective for treating back pain, acupuncture and tai chi for osteoarthritis of the knee, massage therapy for neck pain, and relaxation techniques for headaches. Though less effective, spinal manipulation may also help people with back pain, it found.

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