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Acupuncture for Migraine
 Acupuncture for Migraine

Science confirms acupuncture prevents migraines


A highly respected and official review of scientific literature to prevent migraines showed acupuncture works slightly better than drugs and is not just a placebo.


Some trials tested acupuncture alone compared to routine care, others tested “fake” or “sham” acupuncture, and some compared acupuncture to the use of drugs taken to prevent migraines. Fake or sham acupuncture treatment in research is usually a non-penetrative procedure done to fool the test subject, or can be acupuncture needles inserted into areas on the body assumed to not have a therapeutic effect.  This is controversial, since we don’t fully understand the mechanism of acupuncture, therefore we don’t fully understand how to make a good “fake” acupuncture system to measure placebo effect and not get some active therapeutic effect too.

1. Adding acupuncture is a valid procedure to include in a symptomatic treatment plan to reduce the frequency of migraines

2. Acupuncture treatments are at least as effective as  drugs used to prevent migraines, but without the significant side-effects of these drugs.


With drugs we can and do measure placebo with “sugar pill” equivalents. Since we cannot measure placebo accurately with acupuncture, this particular finding that acupuncture can be as good or better than the best drugs is so very important. Obviously, acupuncture is more than placebo for the treatment of migraines, and I suspect this will apply to many other chronic pain issues as the quality of research improves. As exemplified by the opioid crisis, the pharmaceutical/medical system is struggling to understand and treat chronic pain; we can use some more research on other modalities like acupuncture which are both effective and non-addictive.


In the future, once we know more about acupuncture mechanism and how to properly measure acupuncture placebo, I predict the placebo will be come less because we will discover we are actually measuring some active effects in a some of these so called “fake” procedures.  The gap between acupuncture’s active effects and placebo effects will get larger and will translate to a greater therapeutic significance and justification for using acupuncture.


Gord Grant has extensive experience and success in treatment people for migraines, often helping them become symptom free over time. Acupuncture treatments for migraines and headaches involve a number of different approaches that are used and adapted based on each client’s unique presentation of symptoms.


What makes Gord and the The Acupuncture Turning Point more effective than many, and what inspires us to work with our clients, is that we focus on understanding and addressing each person’s overall health — we don’t just stick the needles in to get the therapeutic effect found in the Cochrane reviews.At the Acupuncture Turning Point we foster and guide each person to discover how they need to change and adapt their life style to meet their health goals.  We encourage our clients to find out what works best for them to have long term relief and vitality. As each person feels more like himself or herself again, this then becomes a positive self fulfilling cycle; indeed, it is the Turning Point!.