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Research

04/12/2007 - Laser acupuncture in children with headache: A double-blind, randomized, bicenter, placebo-controlled trial.

Country: Germany

Institute: University Children’s Hospital, Department of Pediatric Hematology and Oncology, Saarland University, Kirrbergerstr., 66421 Homburg, Germany.

Author(s): Gottschling S, Meyer S, Gribova I, Distler L, Berrang J, Gortner L, Graf N, Shamdeen MG.

Journal: Pain. 2007 Nov 15

Abstract:

To investigate whether laser acupuncture is efficacious in children with headache and if active laser treatment is superior to placebo laser treatment in a prospective, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial of low level laser acupuncture in 43 children (mean age (SD) 12.3 (+/-2.6) years) with headache (either migraine (22 patients) or tension type headache (21 patients)). Patients were randomized to receive a course of 4 treatments over 4 weeks with either active or placebo laser. The treatment was highly individualised based on criteria of Traditional Chinese medicine (TCM).

The primary outcome measure was a difference in numbers of headache days between baseline and the 4 months after randomization. Secondary outcome measures included a change in headache severity using a 10cm Visual Analogue Scale (VAS) for pain and a change in monthly hours with headache. Measurements were taken during 4 weeks before randomization (baseline), at weeks 1-4, 5-8, 9-12 and 13-16 from baseline. The mean number of headaches per month decreased significantly by 6.4 days in the treated group (p<0.001) and by 1.0 days in the placebo group (p=0.22). Secondary outcome measures headache severity and monthly hours with headache decreased as well significantly at all time points compared to baseline (p<0.001) and were as well significantly lower than those of the placebo group at all time points (p<0.001).

We conclude that laser acupuncture can provide a significant benefit for children with headache with active laser treatment being clearly more effective than placebo laser treatment.

Pubmed ID: 18022318