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Acupuncture Can Alleviate Dyspepsia in Pregnancy

Less severe symptoms, fewer drugs needed when acupuncture used

WEDNESDAY, June 10 (HealthDay News) -- Acupuncture may help pregnant women who experience dyspepsia by alleviating their symptoms and reducing the need for medication, according to a study published in the June issue of Acupuncture in Medicine.

Joao Bosco Guerreiro da Silva, of Rio Preto Medical College in Sao Jose do Rio Preto, Brazil, and colleagues conducted a study of 42 pregnant women with dyspepsia who were given dietary advice and offered indigestion medicines if necessary. The women were randomized to conventional treatment alone or with acupuncture. The women reported the severity of their symptoms and their impact on daily life, including sleep and eating habits.

The authors note that there were five women in the control group who dropped out, and one in the acupuncture group. Among the 20 women left in the acupuncture group, there was a significant improvement in symptoms, better sleep and eating habits, and less use of medication compared to the 16 women left in the control group, the investigators found.

"Acupuncture, as was demonstrated in this study, seems to be an effective means of reducing the symptoms and improving the quality of life for gravidas," the authors write. "This technique should be further studied in prospective randomized studies of large populations to confirm our findings in effectiveness and the absence of adverse effects. It is simple to apply and if used in an appropriate manner can reduce the need for medication."

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