Acupuncture may be useful to patients suffering from neck and shoulder pain following surgical treatment for cervical lymphatic metastases. Italian clinicians randomly assigned 48 patients with chronic pain or dysfunction attributed to neck dissection to either weekly acupuncture or usual care (physical therapy, analgesia, and/or anti-inflammatory drugs) for five consecutive weeks. Shoulder pain and function scores improved more in the acupuncture group, and a statistically significant improvement in site-specific quality of life was also reported following acupuncture.

Acupuncture in shoulder pain and functional impairment after neck dissection: A prospective randomized pilot study. Laryngoscope. 2016 Mar 24. doi: 10.1002/lary.25921. [Epub ahead of print).