Date of Award
Selective Evidence-Based Medicine Review
Master of Science in Health Sciences - Physician Assistant
Physician Assistant Studies
John Cavenagh, MBA, PhD, PA-C
Objective: The objective of this selective EBM review is to determine whether or not acupuncture is effective in improving the quality of life for women in the reproductive age diagnosed with endometriosis.
Study Design: Review of 3 RCTs published between 2011-current, all in the English language. One of the RCTs was blinded while the other two were non-blinded.
Data Source: Three RCTs that analyzed the effectiveness of acupuncture therapy compared to control groups. All studies were found using EBSCOhost, PubMed and Medline and were selected based on relevance to the proposed clinical question.
Outcomes Measured: Each of the 3 articles analyzed the effectiveness of improving the quality of life for women in the reproductive age diagnosed with endometriosis. The Endometriosis Health Profile 30 and the physical and psychological sum score of the German version of the 12- Item Short-Form Health Survey were tools used to measure quality of life. The significance of the outcomes was determined using ANOVA p-value, Paired Wilcox test, paired t test, mean change, standard deviation and average.
Results: All 3 studies showed a significant improvement in the quality of life following treatment with acupuncture. de Sousa TR et al found a statistically significant increase in quality of life after 5 sessions of acupuncture compared to those that received the placebo acupuncture.2 Meissner K et al found a statistically significant increase in the quality of life in the intervention group at 3 months.5 However, at the 6-month follow-up the control group had a statistically significant increase in the quality of life compared to the intervention group.5 Mira T A et al also found a statistically significant increase in the quality of life of women with endometriosis after acupuncture treatment, but it was in both types of groups (acupuncture like TENS and selfapplied modes) after 8 weeks.
Conclusions: The RCTs discussed in this review suggest that acupuncture is an effective alternative treatment for improving the quality of life for patients diagnosed with endometriosis. However, it is inconclusive because some studies had a lack of a control group, small study size, failure to address previous treatment, and the number of sessions and the specific acupuncture sites necessary to obtain improvement in quality of life. It is necessary to address these issue in future studies.
Hayes, Ashley M., "Is acupuncture effective in improving the quality of life for women in the reproductive age diagnosed with endometriosis?" (2018). PCOM Physician Assistant Studies Student Scholarship. 364.