Acupuncture, a Chinese traditional medicine technique, is being closely studied by researchers: is this practice effective, and can its use be developed in conventional medicine?
While medicine is becoming increasingly technologically advanced, more than a third of the world’s population has already used acupuncture, a practice derived from traditional Chinese medicine, which involves sticking needles into specific points on the body. Today, new studies allow us to better understand the mechanisms of this ancestral technique and aim to determine against which pathologies acupuncture is actually effective. At the Munich Heart Institute, this practice has already been adopted for heart surgery, in order to reduce the doses of certain anesthetics and sometimes completely eliminate the use of synthetic opioids, which can cause significant side effects. Research also has the ambition to expand the areas in which this technique is used. In Shanghai, ongoing trials aim to determine whether acupuncture can help combat depression. In South Korea, researchers are focusing on addictive behaviours: could needles help the millions of people suffering from addiction? The various studies carried out around the world now seem promising, showing surprising initial results.
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