Acupuncture for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Acupuncture for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome.

Carpal tunnel syndrome causes symptoms of tingling, numbness, weakness and pain in the wrists, hands and fingers.

It occurs when the carpal tunnel inside the wrist swells and puts pressure on one or more nerves. Carpal tunnel syndrome symptoms usually starts and progresses gradually and the pain can come and go.

There is often no single cause of carpal tunnel syndrome. A combination of risk factors contributes to the development of the condition.

What Does The Research Say?

The following insights are obtained from systematic reviews and analysis of clinical trials investigating the efficacy of acupuncture for carpal tunnel syndrome.

Consult with our practitioners for personalised care and advice.

Although well-conducted clinical research can help members of the public to make better-informed decisions about their healthcare, we do not make any claims that any particular treatment may be efficacious for any individual person.

When you consult with our Chinese medicine practitioners, you'll receive personalised advice and treatment based on your symptoms and Chinese medicine diagnosis.

Scientific References

Browse our collection of scientific clinical research on acupuncture for carpal tunnel syndrome.

It includes recent and reputable papers published by peer-reviewed journals within the last 10 years.



Journal of Acupuncture Research

2022, May 31

Electroacupuncture for Carpal Tunnel Syndrome: A Review of Randomized Controlled Trials
Journal of Acupuncture Research Korean Acupuncture & Moxibustion Medicine Society

Electroacupuncture was reported to have significant treatment results compared with the control group in methods such as total effectiveness, electromyography, and tip pinch strength. However, the quality of the studies (using risk of bias) does not allow reliable conclusions to be made. Many high quality (low risk of bias) randomized controlled trials are needed to examine the efficacy of electroacupuncture treatment for carpal tunnel syndrome.

Park CW, Lim MJ, Lee SW, Yi YH, Song DW, Yu SG, Kim MJ, Oh DY, Choi HJ, Ju AR Full Article

Medical Acupuncture

2022, Feb 01

The Effect of Acupuncture on Hand and Wrist Pain Intensity, Functional Status, and Quality of Life in Adults: A Systematic Review
Medical Acupuncture American Academy of Medical Acupuncture

Acupuncture may be effective and safe for short-term pain reduction and functional improvement in hand-and-wrist conditions. Clinicians should interpret the results with caution due to small sample sizes and clinical heterogeneity. Future research is warranted.

Trinh K, Zhou F, Belski N, Deng J, Wong CY Full Article

Journal of Pharmacopuncture

2021, Dec 31

Effect of Manual Acupuncture for Mild-to-Moderate Carpal Tunnel Syndrome: A Systematic Review
Journal of Pharmacopuncture

Manual acupuncture can be used for carpal tunnel syndrome treatment without serious adverse effects.

Huh JH, Jeong HI, Kim KH Full Article

Chinese Medicine

2021, Jul 27

Herbal therapy for ameliorating nonalcoholic fatty liver disease via rebuilding the intestinal microecology
Chinese Medicine International Society for Chinese Medicine

The key roles of CHMs in the regulation of gut microbiota and the gut-liver axis along with their mechanisms (such as modulating intestinal permeability, reducing the inflammatory response, protecting liver cells, improving lipid metabolism, and modulating nuclear receptors), were well summarized. All the knowledge and information presented here will be very helpful for researchers to better understand the applications and mechanisms of CHMs for treatment of NAFLD.

Yang XF, Lu M, You L, Gen H, Yuan L, Tian T, Li CY, Xu K, Hou J, Lei M Full Article

American Journal of Translational Research

2021, Apr 15

Effects of massage and acupuncture on the range of motion and daily living ability of patients with frozen shoulder complicated with cervical spondylosis
American Journal of Translational Research

Massage combined with acupuncture can better improve the ROM of joints and daily living ability of patients with frozen shoulder complicated with cervical spondylosis.

Liu M, Liu Y, Peng C, Wang H, Xu Y, Jiao S, Ding Y Full Article

Chinese Medicine

2021, Jan 11

Efficacy and safety of traditional Chinese medicines for non-alcoholic fatty liver disease: a systematic literature review of randomized controlled trials
Chinese Medicine International Society for Chinese Medicine

There is some evidence from RCTs that supported the effectiveness and safety of TCMs for NAFLD. However, no conclusive recommendations can be made due to the questionable quality of the RCTs. Improvement in the RCT protocol, the use of a larger sample size, a setting of multicenter, and a more focused approach in selecting TCMs are recommended for developing high quality evidence about the use of TCMs in managing NAFLD.

Liang, Z., Chen, X., Shi, J. et al. Full Article

Chinese Medicine

2021, Jan 11

Efficacy and safety of traditional Chinese medicines for non-alcoholic fatty liver disease: a systematic literature review of randomized controlled trials
Chinese Medicine International Society for Chinese Medicine

Based on this review, the efficacy of TCMs in NAFLD management appears to be promising and the risks associated with the investigated TCMs were reportedly minimal. However, no conclusion can be made so far due to the concerns over the quality of RCTs and the possible risks of bias. Improvement in the RCT protocol, the use of a larger sample size, a setting of a multicenter, a more focused approach in selecting TCMs and measures that allow the investigation of long term safety of TCMs are recommended for achieving a high-level quality of TCMs evidence for NAFLD to be used to inform clinical practice.

Liang Z, Chen X, Shi J, Hu H, Xue Y, Ung COL Full Article

Journal of Ethnopharmacology

2021, Jan

Efficacy and safety of standardized Ginkgo biloba L. leaves extract as an adjuvant therapy for sudden sensorineural hearing loss: A systematic review and meta-analysis
Journal of Ethnopharmacology

The results of the current study suggested that GBE might be effective and promising as an adjuvant to corticosteroids in the initial treatment of moderate to profound SSNHL

Si X, Yu Z, Ren X, Huang L, Feng Y. Full Article

Acupuncture in Medicine

2020, Dec 17

Effects of manual acupuncture and electroacupuncture for lateral epicondylalgia of musculoskeletal origin: a systematic review and meta-analysis
Acupuncture in Medicine British Medical Acupuncture Society

Low-level evidence suggests positive effects of acupuncture, but not electroacupuncture, for pain, related-disability, and strength, in LE of musculoskeletal origin, in the short term.

Navarro-Santana MJ, Sanchez-Infante J, Gómez-Chiguano GF, Cummings M, Fernández-de-las-Peñas C, Plaza-Manzano G Full Article

Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine

2020, Oct 16

Efficacy and Safety of Acupuncture Therapy for Patients with Acute Ankle Sprain: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials
Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine

This study has indicated that acupuncture is effective in relieving acute ankle sprains.

Liu AF, Gong SW, Chen JX, Zhai JB. Full Article

BMC Complementary Medicine and Therapies

2020, Sep 18

Systems pharmacology-based approach to investigate the mechanisms of Danggui-Shaoyao-san prescription for treatment of Alzheimer’s disease
BMC Complementary Medicine and Therapies

Overall, this study proposed an integrative systems pharmacology approach to disclose the therapeutic mechanisms of DSS against AD, which also provides novel in silico paradigm for investigating the effective substances of complex TCM prescription.

Wu, Q., Chen, Y., Gu, Y. et al. Full Article

Frontiers in Pharmacology

2020, Aug 12

Therapeutic Effects and Mechanisms of Herbal Medicines for Treating Polycystic Ovary Syndrome: A Review
Frontiers in Pharmacology

Herbal medicines are thought to be promising resources in the development of effective therapeutic agents for PCOS. Further studies that include methodological quality assessment and quantitative synthesis of outcomes are recommended.

Kwon Chan-Young, Cho Ik-Hyun, Park Kyoung Sun Full Article

Neuropediatrics

2020, May 26

Acupuncture and electroacupuncture in the treatment of carpal tunnel syndrome: Systematic review
Neuropediatrics

Acupuncture and electroacupuncture are a therapeutic option for mild to moderate carpal tunnel syndrome with a medium level of scientific evidence, tending towards a high level, and with a medium level of recommendation.

Badia M, Santafé MM Full Article

Complementary Therapies in Medicine

2020, Mar

The effectiveness of acupuncture in the management of persistent regional myofascial head and neck pain: A systematic review and meta-analysis
Complementary Therapies in Medicine

This academic article concludes acupuncture is effective in relieving persistent head and neck myofascial pain.

Farag AM, Malacarne A, Pagni SE, Maloney GE. Full Article

Medicine

2020, Jan

Danggui-Shaoyao-San for dementia: A PRISMA-compliant systematic review and meta-analysis
Medicine

These estimates suggest that DSS provides clinically important reductions in symptoms of AD and VD and can be a promising anti-dementia drug candidate.

Kim Y, Cho SH. Full Article

Issues in Mental Health Nursing

2020, Jan 15

Getting Well Is More Than Gaining Weight – Patients’ Experiences of a Treatment Program for Anorexia Nervosa Including Ear Acupuncture
Issues in Mental Health Nursing

This study has highlighted the effectiveness of acupuncture in improving symptoms of anorexia nervosa such as reduced stress levels and constipation.

Olsson A, Landgren K Full Article

Nature Communications

2019, Oct 31

Theabrownin from Pu-erh tea attenuates hypercholesterolemia via modulation of gut microbiota and bile acid metabolism
Nature Communications

The lipid and cholesterol-lowering effects of Pu-erh tea have been shown to be of clinical value in treating obesity, fatty liver and NAFLD. Specifically, Pu-erh tea was found to lower TG and TC levels more significantly than green, oolong, or black teas. In this study, mice and human subjects receiving Pu-erh tea exhibited significant decreases in hepatic and serum cholesterol levels. These results confirmed other reported lipid and cholesterol-lowering effects of Pu-erh tea in both mice and human subjects.

Huang, F., Zheng, X., Ma, X. et al. Full Article

Timisoara Physical Education and Rehabilitation Journal

2019, Sep 01

Systematic review of treatment methods for the carpal tunnel syndrome
Timisoara Physical Education and Rehabilitation Journal

The results of treatment comparisons have proved that non-invasive therapies are superior to surgical treatments, taking into consideration symptom improvement, the maximum period up to noticeable results, relapse situations, patients’ preferences, etc.

Glazer C, Pantea C Full Article

Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice

2019, May

Effect of Gua Sha therapy on patients with diabetic peripheral neuropathy: A randomized controlled trial
Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice

This RCT showcased that Gua Sha therapy significantly reduced severity of neuropathy symptoms, improved performance of sensory function, reduced peripheral artery disease, and better controlled plasma glucose.

Xie X, Lu L, Zhou X, Zhong C, Ge G, Huang H, Zhang X, Zeng Y Full Article

Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine

2019, Mar 19

Acupuncture to Promote Recovery of Disorder of Consciousness after Traumatic Brain Injury: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis
Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine

This systematic review highlights that acupuncture is effective in improving traumatic brain injury recovery. Acupuncture and other interventions vastly improve clinical outcomes compared to drugs alone.

Tan L, Zeng L, Wang N, Deng M, Chen Y, Ma T, Zhang L, Xu Z. Full Article

Complementary Therapies in Medicine

2019, Feb

Acupuncture for the treatment of sudden sensorineural hearing loss: A systematic review and meta-analysis: Acupuncture for SSNHL
Complementary Therapies in Medicine

This systematic review showcased that acupuncture is a safe and effective treatment option for SSNHL patients who could not be cured by drugs alone.

Chen S, Zhao M, Qiu J. Full Article

International Journal of Food Science & Technology

2019, Jan 20

Systematic review and meta-analysis of anti-hyperglycaemic effects of Pu-erh tea
International Journal of Food Science & Technology Institute of Food Science and Technology

The results gleaned from meta-analysis have shown that the intake of Pu-erh tea in diabetic mice has a significant effect on lowering blood glucose after 21 days. Based upon conclusive findings derived from this research, the authors recommend with professional confidence that people drink Pu-erh tea for more than 3 weeks in order to maximise the effect on lowering blood sugar.

Lin, H.-C., Lee, C.-T., Yen, Y.-Y., Chu, C.-L., Hsieh, Y.-P., Yang, C.-S. and Lan, S.-J. Full Article

The Journal of Internal Korean Medicine

2018, Dec 30

Clinical Effectiveness of Acupuncture in the Treatment of Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease: A Systematic Review
The Journal of Internal Korean Medicine The Society of Internal Korean Medicine

In this meta-analysis, acupuncture relieved hepatic steatosis, and reduced TC, and TG in NAFLD patients. more well-planned studies are still needed due to the heterogeneity and the considerable methodological flaws in the analyzed trials.

Joon Hyun, Joo-bok Lee, So-yeon Kim, Chang-woo Han Full Article

Medicine

2018, Oct

Oriental herbal medicine and moxibustion for polycystic ovary syndrome
Medicine

According to current evidence, OHM combined with moxibustion might be beneficial for treating PCOS. Moreover, the treatment might improve the therapeutic effects of conventional WMs including clomiphene citrate, oral contraceptives, and/or metformin. However, the findings should be interpreted with caution, owing to poor methodological quality of the included studies. Further larger, high-quality, rigorous RCTs should be conducted in this regard.

Kwon, Chan-Young, Lee, Boram, Park, Kyoung Sun Full Article

Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine

2018, Apr 22

Acupuncture at Tiaokou (ST38) for Shoulder Adhesive Capsulitis: What Strengths Does It Have? A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials
Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine

This review suggests that acupuncture at Tiaokou/ST38 (as sole treatment or in combination with shoulder acupoints) achieved statistically significant effects in improving the overall symptoms and the percentage of clinical effectiveness. Nonetheless, despite stringent methodological analyses, these results need to be strengthened by additional RCTs of higher quality.

Yang C, Lv TT, Yu TY, Wong S, Lu MQ, Li YZ Full Article

Journal of Alzheimer's Disease

2018, Feb 6

Chinese Herbal Medicine for Vascular Dementia: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of High-Quality Randomized Controlled Trials
Journal of Alzheimer's Disease

The findings of the present study support, at least to an extent, that CHM can be recommended for routine use for treatment of VaD.

Xu, Qing-qing et al Full Article

The Acupuncture

2017, Aug 20

A Review of Research on Acupuncture and Moxibustion Treatment for De Quervain’s Stenosing Tenosynovitis
The Acupuncture

Although the results of the studies to date provide evidence that acupuncture and moxibustion are effective treatments for De Quervain's Stenosing Tenosynovitis, the absence of a standard, objective evaluation tool, and a lack of reporting on the negative side-effects associated with treatment remain important factors that should be addressed in future studies.

Kong HJ, Kang JH, Yun GW, Oh SY, Lee H Full Article

Journal of Korean Medicine

2017, Mar 31

The Effect of Traditional Oriental Herbal Medicine for Anorexia in Cancer Patients: A Systematic Review
Journal of Korean Medicine

This review highlighted the significance of 11 RTCs in improving anorexia with chinese medicine in patients with cancer.

Lee JH, Bae K, Yoo HS Full Article

Journal of Traditional Chinese Medicine

2017, Feb

Guasha improves the rating of perceived exertion scale score and reduces heart rate variability in male weightlifters: a randomized controlled trial
Journal of Traditional Chinese Medicine The China Association of Chinese Medicine & Chinese Academy of Chinese Medical Sciences

This article highlighted the efficacy of gua sha to facilitate the parasympathetic nervous activity and modulate the balance between parasympathetic and sympathetic activities in both the healthy men and the weightlifters.

Xingze W, Peijie C, Xingyu H, Yingying W, Jinsheng Y, Eungpinichpong W, Yuming Y, Chatchawan U Full Article

Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine

2016, Dec 29

Acupuncture for Functional Dyspepsia: What Strength Does It Have? A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trial
Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine

Based on current available evidence, acupuncture therapy achieves statistically significant effect for functional dyspepsia in comparison with sham acupuncture and is superior to medication (prokinetic agents) in improving the symptoms and quality of life of functional dyspepsia patients.

Bo Pang, Tao Jiang, Yuan-Hao Du, Jing Li, Bo Li, Ya-Cai Hu, Qiu-Han Ca Full Article

Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine

2016, Oct 31

A Review of Western and Traditional Chinese Medical Approaches to Managing Nonalcoholic Fatty Liver Disease
Evidence-Based Complementary and Alternative Medicine

Therefore, although there is evidence that certain TCM herbs and formulas have an effect on NAFLD, well-designed TCM clinical trials are warranted to better understand the efficacy and safety of TCM drugs as treatment for nonalcoholic fatty liver disease.

Wei-Fan Hsu, Lee-Yan Sheen, Hung-Jen Lin, Hen-Hong Chang Full Article

Maturitas

2016, Mar

Herbal medicine (Danggui Shaoyao San) for treating primary dysmenorrhea: A systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled trials
Maturitas European Menopause and Andropause Society

Our systematic review and meta-analysis provided suggestive evidence of the superiority of DSS over analgesics or placebo for dysmenorrhea. The quality of evidence for this finding was low to moderate because of a high risk of bias.

Hye Won Lee, Ji Hee Jun, Ki-Jung Kil, Byong-Seob Ko, Choong Hwan Lee, Myeong Soo Lee Full Article

Journal of Oriental Neuropsychiatry

2016, Mar 30

A Review Study on the Treatment of Eating Disorder in Traditional Chinese Medicine
Journal of Oriental Neuropsychiatry The Korean Society of Oriental Neuropsychiatry

The results of our study indicated that TCM clinical studies on eating disorder were being conducted more actively than in Korean medicine

Jo SH, Ahn YJ, Lee SH, Lim JH Full Article

Oncotarget

2015, Nov

Practice of traditional Chinese medicine for psycho-behavioral intervention improves quality of life in cancer patients: A systematic review and meta-analysis
Oncotarget

The systematic review study showed the efficacy of Chinese Medicine in improving the quality of lives in cancer patients. The study highlighted patients to have reduced functional impairments, pain relief, depression remission, reduced time to flatulence following surgery and sleep improvement.

Tao W, Luo X, Cui B, Liang D, Wang C, Duan Y, Li X, Zhou S, Zhao M, Li Y, He Y, Wang S, Kelley KW, Jiang P, Liu Q. Full Article

Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews

2015, Jun 4

Chinese herbal medicine for treating recurrent urinary tract infections in women
Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews Cochrane

Evidence from seven small studies suggested that CHM as an independent intervention or in conjunction with antibiotics may be beneficial for treating recurrent UTIs during the acute phase of infection and may reduce the recurrent UTI incidence for at least six months post‐treatment. CHM treatments specifically formulated for recurrent UTI may be more effective than herbal treatments designed to treat acute UTI. However, the small number and poor quality of the included studies meant that it was not possible to formulate robust conclusions on the use of CHM for recurrent UTI in women either alone or as an adjunct to antibiotics.

Flower A, Wang LQ, Lewith G, Liu JP, Li Q. Full Article

PLOS One

2015, Apr

Acupuncture Therapy for Sudden Sensorineural Hearing Loss: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials
PLOS One Public Library of Science

This academic article showcased that the effect of manual acupuncture combined with Western medicine comprehensive treatment (WMCT) was better than WMCT alone

Zhang Xc, Xu Xp, Xu Wt, Hou Wz, Cheng Yy, et al. Full Article

Shiraz E-Medical Journal

2014, Nov 24

The Effect of Herbal Tea Containing Fennel Seed on Breast Milk Sufficiency Signs and Growth Parameters of Iranian Infants
Shiraz E-Medical Journal

This study showcased fennel tea improved breast milk sufficiency signs.

Ghasemi V, Kheirkhah M, Neisani Samani L, Vahedi M Full Article

Complementary Therapies in Medicine

2013, Dec

Patients with anorexia nervosa receiving acupuncture or acupressure; their view of the therapeutic encounter
Complementary Therapies in Medicine

This study highlighted that participants reported to have a strong therapeutic relationship developed between the practitioner and participants from the acupuncture or acupressure interventions

Fogarty S, Smith CA, Touyz S, Madden S, Buckett G, Hay P. Full Article

The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine

2012, Jul

Development of a Chinese Medicine Pattern Severity Index for Understanding Eating Disorders
The Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine Society for Acupuncture Research

This reported highlighted the efficacy of Chinese medicine pattern in evidence-based research

Sarah Fogarty, David Harris, Chris Zaslawski, Andrew J. McAinch, and Lily Stojanovska Full Article

Molecular Biology Reports

2012, Jun 21

Traditional Chinese medicines benefit to nonalcoholic fatty liver disease: a systematic review and meta-analysis
Molecular Biology Reports

Comparing with western medicines mentioned above, TCM had a better effect on the normalization of alanine aminotransferase and disappearance of radiological steatosis in the treatment of NAFLD. Furthermore, 246 kinds of Chinese herbs were included in our present study, with an average of 10 herbs (range 1–31) in each formulation. Hawthorn Fruit (321 times in 17,670 patients) was the most often used herb in the treatment of NAFLD. In conclusion, TCM is of modest benefit to the treatment of NAFLD.

Shi KQ, Fan YC, Liu WY, Li LF, Chen YP, Zheng MH Full Article


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