New research concludes that acupuncture “significantly reduced type I hypersensitivity itch in patients with AD (atopic dermatitis).” In this double-blinded, randomized, placebo-controlled study; researchers compared acupuncture and drug therapy with placebo and non-intervention control groups. Both acupuncture and drug therapy significantly reduced itching with acupuncture being the most effective of the two.
Researchers measured outcomes for two types of acupuncture protocols. Protocol I measured the effects of acupuncture using preventative (preceding) acupuncture treatment. Protocol II measured acupuncture’s effects when applied to active itching. Protocol II was the most effective of the two. Drug therapy testing employed citirzine, an antihistamine, as the pharmacological agent to control itching. Citirizine (Zyrtec, Reactine) was as effective as preventative acupuncture care but not as effective as active acupuncture.
Allergy. Volume 67, Issue 4, pages 566–573, April 2012. Acupuncture compared with oral antihistamine for type I hypersensitivity itch and skin response in adults with atopic dermatitis – a patient- and examiner-blinded, randomized, placebo-controlled, crossover trial. F. Pfab, M.-T. Kirchner, J. Huss-Marp, T. Schuster, P. C. Schalock, J. Fuqin, G. I. Athanasiadis, H. Behrendt, J. Ring, U. Darsow, V. Napadow. 8 FEB 2012. DOI: 10.1111/j.1398-9995.2012.02789.x
1 Department of Dermatology and Allergy, Technische Universität München, Munich, Germany
2 Department of Radiology (MA), Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts, USA
3 Division of Environmental Dermatology and Allergy, Helmholtz Zentrum München/TUM, ZAUM-Center for Allergy and Environment, Munich, Germany
4 Department of Prevention and Sports Medicine, Klinikum rechts der Isar, Technische Universitaet Muenchen, Munich, Germany
5 Institute for Medical Statistics and Epidemiology, Technische Universität München, Munich, Germany
6 Department of Dermatology, Harvard Medical School, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA, USA
7 Christine-Kühne Center of Allergy Research and Education (CK-CARE), Munich, Germany
8 Department of Radiology, Logan College of Chiropractic, Chesterfield, MO, USA