The acupuncture debate – is it over?
The journal Anesthesia and Analgesia has just published pro and con articles on the use of acupuncture for pain relief. Full versions of both papers are on the journal website. The pro paper (Acupuncture in 21st Century Anesthesia: Is There a Needle in the Haystack?) is very appropriately titled. The authors certainly seek out some pretty well-hidden needles. The authors of the con paper (Acupuncture Is Theatrical Placebo), David Colquhoun, of DC’s Improbable Science and Steve Novella, of Science-Based Medicine, conclude that there has been enough testing of acupuncture to warrant it being abandoned.
It’s worth reading both articles to see how public opinion of scientific issues can be hijacked by the use of red flag tactics.
Hat tip to DC’s Improbable Science.