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Acupuncture 'cuts number of flushes'

Menopause-linked hot flushes can be relieved by acupuncture, a study has shown.

The number and intensity of the flushes was reduced through the treatment.

Around 260 post-menopausal women who experienced at least seven hot flushes a day for seven days in a row were put into two groups: one where the women received 10 sessions of acupuncture and one where they received only advice on how to look after yourself.

Members of the treatment group found their hot flushes became less intense and less frequent, with the incidence being cut by an average of 5.8 flushes a day. Those given advice only had an average of 3.7 fewer hot flushes over 24 hours.

Hot flush intensity decreased by 3.2 units in the acupuncture group and 1.8 units in the control group.

Those in the acupuncture group said they slept better and noticed that their physical well being improved.

The study was conducted at the National Research Centre in Alternative and Complementary Medicine in Tromso, Norway.

Copyright © Press Association 2011

British Acupuncture Council

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"Well well - when all along we nurses believed there was more to the menopause than HRT" - Kathy French, London