Acupuncture/ pressureCancerChildrenNausea/Vomiting

Acupuncture for nausea and vomiting in kids with cancer

 Researchers from Saarland University in Homburg, Germany report it “seems to be effective.”

First, the details.

  • 23 children with solid tumors received chemotherapy known to be associated with a high incidence of nausea and vomiting.
  • They were randomly allocated to acupuncture treatment during either the second or third identical chemotherapy course together with standard anti-nausea and vomiting medicine.
  • 46 chemotherapy courses with or without acupuncture were compared.

And, the results.

  • The need for anti-nausea and vomiting medicine was significantly lower when acupuncture was given.
  • Episodes of vomiting per course of treatment were also significantly lower when acupuncture was given.
  • Except for pain from needling, no side effects occurred.
  • Patients’ acceptance of acupuncture was high.

The bottom line?
A review published earlier this year found that for adults, “research shows that acupuncture can inhibit chemotherapy-related acute vomiting, but conclusions about its effects in pediatrics cannot be made on the basis of the available published clinical trials data.”

This study adds support for acupuncture in this special population.

10/26/08 18:21 JR

Hi, I’m JR

John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.