Women undergoing treatment for breast cancer are often troubled by hot flashes as a consequence of the treatment. Unfortunately, the usual and most effective treatment for hot flashes is estrogen, which is off limits for most women who have had breast cancer. The treatments that result in hot flashes are often blocking this hormone to keep it from encouraging the growth of the cancer.
Acupuncture Helps Women Undergoing Breast Cancer Treatment:
Non-hormonal treatments for hot flashes, such as black cohosh, are not particularly effective for women with breast cancer. But acupuncture helps women whose hot flashes are due to breast cancer treatment.
A new study from Italy shows that ten acupuncture sessions over three months, together with advice on better self-care, significantly reduced hot flash scores in breast cancer survivors. The control group simply got self-care advice.
How Much Did Acupuncture Help Women?
The difference in hot flashes was significant, about 50 percent lower, and remained so for at least six months after the study ended. The women in the acupuncture group also reported a higher quality of life. Best of all, acupuncture had no serious side effects.