(HealthDay News) — Acupuncture may improve management of hot flashes in women with breast cancer, according to a study published online March 28 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

Grazia Lesi, M.D., from the Bologna Local Health Authority in Italy, and colleagues randomly assigned 190 women with breast cancer to acupuncture (10 treatments) plus enhanced self-care (85 patients) or enhanced self-care alone (105 patients) to manage hot flashes over 12 weeks.

The researchers found that acupuncture plus enhanced self-care was associated with a significantly lower hot flash score than enhanced self-care at the end of treatment (P < 0.001) and at three- and six-month post-treatment follow-up visits (P = 0.0028 and 0.001, respectively). Fewer climacteric symptoms and higher quality of life in the vasomotor, physical, and psychosocial dimensions were also seen in the acupuncture group (P < 0.05).

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“Acupuncture in association with enhanced self-care is an effective integrative intervention for managing hot flashes and improving quality of life in women with breast cancer,” the authors write.

One author disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry.

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