Electroacupuncture (EA) may be able to reduce symptoms of fatigue, anxiety and depression from early stage breast cancer patients, who experience joint pain due to the use of aromatase inhibitors (AIs) for the treatment of the disease, according to a research from the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania.
This is the first the time a study defines the benefits of EA, small electric stimulus through pairs of acupuncture needles, in the improvement of these symptoms.
The results, published in the Cancer journal, revealed the efficiency in reducing fatigue, anxiety and depression in eight weeks, during a randomized, placebo-controlled trial meant to confirm prior data released in November from last year. AIs are the most common type of drugs prescribed to post-menopausal women with early-stage, hormone receptor positive breast cancer, to prevent the recurrence of the disease. However, it often causes patients fatigue, anxiety, depression and sleep disturbances. Moreover, almost half of the patients don't complete their treatment and stop taking the medication or don't take them as recommended.