A recent small clinical experiment shows that acupuncture may provide important health benefits for people suffering from COPD or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease. Acupuncture is usually used as an adjunct treatment to help offset labored breathing after exertion. This is the biggest problem facing patients with COPD. COPD is actually a comprehensive term that includes all lung conditions that obstruct the respiratory tract.
Doctors agree that COPD is a condition associated with old age. So far, conventional modern medicine has really no treatment that can effectively treat this disease. When treatment is given, it is meant to make the patients feel a lot better and not really treat the condition itself.
A study was conducted to rate acupuncture’s effectiveness in dealing with COPD in Cleveland. The study, which was done in Japan, had 68 adults all with COPD volunteering as test subjects. They were broken into two equal groups with one receiving 12 weeks of acupuncture treatment and the other group given placebo acupuncture (blunt needles were used that weren’t meant to puncture the skin) also for 12 weeks. All the subjects continued their medication prescribed to them by their doctors.
Walking tests were administered and monitored to see how well the patients breathed during the tests. The researchers saw that the members of the acupuncture group acupuncture were far less breathless than those in the placebo group.
Scientists studying COPD have seen that fatigue was seen in muscles that support thoracic movement in COPD patients. This may be the underlying reason for COPD.
During an acupuncture treatment for COPD, these muscles become relaxed with leads to better respiratory support. This observation needs to be proven in clinical studies of which none has been done yet. COPD is not an easy disease to treat. So far, conventional Western medicine’s answer to this disease has been fas-acting bronchodilators as they can act quickly in relieving shortness of breath and other COPD symptoms.
The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that all over the world, there are over 65 million people suffering from moderate to severe cases of COPD. This problem will only get worse as outdoor and indoor pollution gradually worsens over the years making the risk high for people exposed to these types of pollution every day.