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A review of nine randomized controlled trials suggests acupuncture may be an effective therapy to manage chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome (CP/CPPS) when compared with a variety of control interventions or no therapy. However, the authors of this review, which was published in the Journal of Andrology, noted that the methodological quality of the studies had major flaws.
In fact, only one study rated a Jadad score of greater than 3. The Jadad system is a procedure that independently rates the methodological accuracy of a study, ranging from 0 (very poor) to 5 (rigorous).
An earlier meta-analysis was conducted in China and was published in 2008. That review involved thirteen case-control studies on acupuncture for chronic prostatitis before August 2007 and involved a total of 861 cases and 738 controls. Overall, the effectiveness and cure rates were significantly higher among men who had acupuncture than among controls.
Based on the latest review, evidence that acupuncture is an effective therapy for chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome is “encouraging” but “not conclusive.” Additional studies are needed before a more definitive endorsement of acupuncture for chronic prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome can be made.
Read more in our Prostatitis Health Center.
Posadzki P et al. Acupuncture for chronic nonbacterial prostatitis/chronic pelvic pain syndrome: a systematic review. J Androl 2011 Mar 24
Wang CY, Han RF. Acupuncture for chronic prostatitis: a meta-analysis. Zhonghu Nan Ke Xue 2008 Sep; 14(9): 853-56