Treatments for Hot Flashes
Eighty-five percent of menopausal women in western countries experience hot
flashes. With the increased knowledge of side effects attributable to
conventional treatment options, more women are exploring natural alternatives.
Although more definitive research is necessary, several natural therapies show
promise in treating hot flashes without the risks associated with conventional
therapies. Soy and other phytoestrogens, black cohosh, evening primrose oil,
vitamin E, the bioflavonoid hesperidin with vitamin C, ferulic acid, acupuncture
treatment, and regular aerobic exercise have been shown effective in treating
hot flashes in menopausal women.
Philp, H.A. Hot flashes – a review of the literature on
alternative and complementary treatment approaches. Alternative medicine review
: a journal of clinical therapeutic 8(3):284-302.
Adverse Reactions to
The authors reviewed the potentially serious adverse events associated with
acupuncture as reported in retrospective reviews, case reports, and prospective
surveys of practitioners. They found that both the general public and physicians
are becoming more interested in the ancient Chinese medical practice of
acupuncture. This paper discusses the basic philosophy of acupuncture and
describes adverse events that might be associated with acupuncture treatment.
Some events, such as nausea and syncope, can be mild and transient, but rare
events, such as septicemia and hepatitis C infection, can be fatal. As the role
of acupuncture in today's multidisciplinary clinics increases, the complications
of acupuncture, although infrequent, cannot be overlooked. They conclude that
responsible clinicians must be aware of any complications that can arise from
Chung, A. et al. Adverse effects of acupuncture. Which are
clinically significant? Canadian Family Physician 49:985-9.
Auricular Acupuncture Effective in Treating Postoperative
The authors studied the effect of auricular acupuncture on postoperative nausea
and vomiting (PONV). One hundred female patients undergoing transabdominal
hysterectomy participated in the study. The patients were divided into two
groups (auricular acupuncture treatment group and non-treatment group) in order
to test the effectiveness of auricular acupuncture. There was no significant
difference in age, weight, height or duration of anesthesia between the two
groups of patients. The authors found a significant difference between the
control and auricular acupuncture treatment groups in the incidence of vomiting
12 hours after surgery (68% and 30%, respectively, p < 0.01). They did not
observe any noteworthy side effects from treatment. The researchers conclude
that auricular acupuncture is effective in reducing vomiting following
transabdominal hysterectomy in female patients.
Kim, Y. et al. Clinical observations on postoperative vomiting
treated by auricular acupuncture. The American Journal of Chinese Medicine.