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GRASP Randomised controlled trial
Chinese acupuncture for chronic shoulder pain: 65% response rate at 6 weeks compared with 24% with sham acupuncture and 37% with standard conservative orthopaedic treatment
  1. Edzard Ernst
  1. University of Exeter, Exeter, UK
  1. Correspondence to Edzard Ernst
    Complementary Medicine, Peninsula Medical School, University of Exeter, 25 Victoria Park Road, Exeter EX2 4NT; Edzard.Ernst{at}

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Shoulder pain can have several causes. The problem is common and often difficult to treat. Acupuncture has long been advocated for the management of various pain syndromes, including shoulder pain. Anecdotal evidence supports its use for this purpose, but clinical trials have yielded mixed findings.


In this multicentre patient-blinded study, the German researchers randomised 424 outpatients suffering from shoulder pain for at least 6 weeks who had a pain score of at least 50 mm …

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  • Competing interests None.