Medical Research

Acupuncture and Insomnia

Kristen Sparrow • October 24, 2012

Nice study showing acupuncture and zolpidem have the same efficacy for insomnia.
Asian J Psychiatr. 2012 Sep;5(3):231-5. doi: 10.1016/j.ajp.2011.12.003.
A comparison between acupuncture versus zolpidem in the treatment of primary insomnia.
Tu JH, Chung WC, Yang CY, Tzeng DS.
To determine the relative efficacy of acupuncture and zolpidem in the treatment of primary insomnia, we administered a sleep quality scale to thirty-three patients with primary insomnia randomly chosen to receive one of the two therapies at a psychosomatic clinic.
A study in the psychosomatic clinic at a teaching hospital in southern Taiwan from November 2007 to November 2008. The 19 patients in acupuncture group underwent one acupuncture session a week. The 14 patients in the control group took zolpidem 1# (10mg) every night. Members of both groups returned to our clinic once a week for four weeks. The main outcome measure was the Pittsburgh Sleep Quality Index (PSQI).
Both groups were found to have improved significantly. Using generalized estimating equation analysis to test the variance with group and time as factors, we found both groups improved over time at a similar rate (p=0.79).
Acupuncture might be used as an alternative strategy compared to zolpidem for the treatment of primary insomnia.