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Acupuncture - Full Body and Ear/Auricular - Alleviates Anxiety Prior to Surgery

In a randomized, blinded study involving 35 elective ambulatory surgery patients, treatment with either full body acupuncture or ear/auricular acupuncture was found to significantly relieve anxiety, assessed via the Zung Self-Rating Anxiety Scale (SAS). SAS scores among subjects in the full body acupuncture group reduced from 55.39 prior to the intervention to 44.82 after the intervention, and SAS scores among subjects in the ear acupuncture group reduced from 57.57 before to 46.32 after the treatment. Considering the fact that, as the others point out, "Preoperative anxiety has become more frequent in preoperative patients and can bring negative impact on operation outcomes," these results are significant and suggest that pre-operative treatment with acupuncture may be a safe and effective way or reducing preoperative anxiety, which may have additional benefits on post-operative outcomes overall.


"Comparing the treatment effectiveness of body acupuncture and auricular acupuncture in preoperative anxiety treatment," Wu S, Liang J, et al, J Res Med Sci, 2011 Jan; 16(1): 39-42. (Address: Department of Psychology, School of Aerospace Medicine, Fourth Military Medical University, Xi'an, China).

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