Australian researchers have conducted a study exploring the experience of acupuncture for people with chronic low back pain. This qualitative study used in-depth interviews with 11 people who had received acupuncture for chronic low back pain to identify main themes. The results showed that the core theme was ‘Reclaiming Control’, which was related to the sense of well-being experienced by most of the participants as a result of receiving acupuncture. The other themes included ‘Gaining Sanctuary’, ‘Gaining Trust’ and ‘Working Together’, which reflected the experience of the participants entering an aesthetically appealing, calm and relaxing space, developing confidence in the acupuncturists’ ability to care for them, and negotiating strategies and sharing decision-making with acupuncturists about their care. The authors conclude that clinicians providing acupuncture for low back pain may elicit an immediate sense of calmness in patients which has subsequent benefits for the patient’s well¬≠being, and that the sense of calmness may be enhanced by providing a relaxing physical environment. They further note that the interpersonal processes of establishing trust and shared decision-making are important for clients. Shared decision-making can be improved by considering the explanation of issues and plans to the patient, and especially by developing an understanding of each patient’s worldview and using language that the suits each individual’s healthcare orientation. (The experience of acupuncture care from the perspective of people with chronic low back pain: a grounded theory study. Acupunct Med. 2014 May 1. doi: [Epub ahead of print]). http:/ /www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/ pubmed / 24785538

 

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