The C.A.M. Report
Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Fair, Balanced, and to the Point
  • About this web log

    This blog ran from 2006 to 2016 and was intended as an objective and dispassionate source of information on the latest CAM research. Since my background is in pharmacy and allopathic medicine, I view all CAM as advancing through the development pipeline to eventually become integrated into mainstream medical practice. Some will succeed while others fail. But all are treated fairly here.

  • About the author

    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.

  • Common sense considerations

    The material on this weblog is for informational purposes. It is not medical advice or counsel. Be smart, consult your health professional before using CAM.

  • Recent Posts

  • Recent Comments

    Review: Acupuncture for Bell’s palsy?

    Bell’s palsy is a form of temporary facial paralysis resulting from damage or trauma to the facial nerves. It’s the most common cause of facial paralysis.

    This Cochrane Library review examined the effectiveness of acupuncture in hastening recovery and reducing long-term morbidity.

    First, the details.

    • 49 potentially relevant articles were identified.
      • 6 studies involving 537 participants with Bell’s palsy were included.
        • 5 used acupuncture.
        • The other study used acupuncture combined with drugs.
    • The researchers looked for evidence of efficacy of acupuncture in hastening recovery and reducing long-term illness from Bell’s palsy.

    And, the results.

    • Harmful side effects were not reported.
    • Poor quality caused by flaws in study design or reporting and clinical differences between studies prevented reliable conclusions about the value of acupuncture.

    The bottom line?

    The authors concluded, “The quality of the included trials was inadequate to allow any conclusion about the efficacy of acupuncture.”

    2 additional anecdotal reports were published since the previous Cochrane review in 2004. The authors didn’t include them in the latest review because they didn’t qualify as studies.

    8/9/10 21:13 JR

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