Acupuncture/ pressureChildren

Is acupuncture safe for children?

Researchers at the University of Alberta, Edmonton, reviewed the evidence.

First, the details.

  • 28 reports were included in the review.

And, the results.

  • 279 adverse events were identified.
  • 25 were serious.
    • 12 cases of thumb deformity
    • 5 infections
    • 1 case each of cardiac rupture, pneumothorax, nerve impairment, subarachnoid hemorrhage, intestinal obstruction, hemoptysis, reversible coma, and overnight hospitalization
  • 1 was moderate (infection)
  • 253 were mild including pain, bruising, bleeding, and worsening of symptoms.
  • The risk of a mild adverse event was about 12%.

The bottom line?

The authors concluded, “Many of the serious advsere events might have been caused by substandard practice. Our results support those from adult studies, which have found that acupuncture is safe when performed by appropriately trained practitioners.”

12/6/11 20:54 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.