A Chinese multi-centre trial has found that acupuncture is as good as the drug flunarizine at reducing pain and improving quality of life for migraineurs, and more effective than the drug at decreasing the number days on which patients experience migraine attacks. One hundred and forty migraine patients were randomly assigned to two groups: an acupuncture group, treated with verum acupuncture plus a placebo drug, and a control group treated with sham acupuncture plus flunarizine. Both groups received acupuncture three times per week and drugs each night. Patients in the acupuncture group had better responder rates (defined as a reduction in migraine days by at least 50%) and fewer migraine days compared with the control group. No significant differences were found between acupuncture and flunarizine in reduction of pain intensity and improvement of quality of life. (Efficacy of acupuncture for migraine prophylaxis: A single-blinded, double-dummy, randomized controlled trial. Pain. 2011 Aug;152(8):1864-71).

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