Electroacupuncture in Treating Delayed Nausea and Vomiting in Patients Receiving Chemotherapy For Newly Diagnosed Childhood Sarcoma, Neuroblastoma, Nasopharyngeal Cancer, Germ Cell Tumors, or Hodgkin Lymphoma

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Basic Trial Information

PhaseTypeStatusAgeSponsorProtocol IDs
No phase specifiedSupportive careCompleted5 to 35NCI, OtherACCL04C2
NCCAM-02-AT-0172, NCI-02-AT-0172, COG-ACCL04C2, CDR0000069419, NCT00040911

Trial Description


RATIONALE: Electroacupuncture may help to reduce or prevent delayed nausea and vomiting in patients treated with chemotherapy.

PURPOSE: This randomized clinical trial is studying the effectiveness of electroacupuncture in treating delayed nausea and vomiting in patients who are receiving chemotherapy for newly diagnosed childhood sarcoma, neuroblastoma, nasopharyngeal cancer, germ cell tumors, or Hodgkin lymphoma.

Further Study Information



  • Determine the efficacy of electroacupuncture, in terms of reducing acute and delayed chemotherapy-induced nausea, in patients with newly diagnosed pediatric sarcoma, neuroblastoma, nasopharyngeal carcinoma, or germ cell tumors.


  • Determine the efficacy of this therapy, in terms of reducing delayed chemotherapy-induced emesis, in these patients.
  • Determine the efficacy of this therapy, in terms of altering salivary cortisol levels and fasting serum glucose and insulin levels as stress parameters, in these patients.
  • Determine the efficacy of this therapy, in terms of improving the quality of life, in these patients.
  • Determine the efficacy of this therapy, in terms of reducing acute nausea and emesis, in these patients.

OUTLINE: This is a multicenter, randomized, double-blind study. Patients are stratified according to planned treatment with cisplatin-based chemotherapy (yes vs no) and gender. Patients are randomized to 1 of 2 arms.

  • Arm I: Patients undergo electroacupuncture to specific acupuncture points on the arms and legs over 25 minutes twice daily on days 1 and 2 and then once daily on days 3-7 during week 1 of chemotherapy course 1 (9 acupuncture treatments total).
  • Arm II: Patients undergo electroacupuncture to sham points on the arms and legs as in arm I.

Quality of life is assessed at baseline, on days 1 and 8 of each treatment course, and then after completion of the study.

PROJECTED ACCRUAL: A total of 65 patients (approximately 32 per arm) will be accrued for this study within 2.5-3 years.

Eligibility Criteria


  • Newly diagnosed malignancy of 1 of the following types:
  • Pediatric sarcoma
  • Neuroblastoma
  • Nasopharyngeal carcinoma
  • Germ cell tumor
  • Hodgkin lymphoma
  • Meets 1 of the following criteria:
  • Eligible for Children's Oncology Group (COG) protocol for sarcoma, neuroblastoma, or germ cell tumor
  • Eligible for NCI Pediatric Oncology Branch (POB) protocol for sarcoma
  • Following COG-approved standard treatment regimen for sarcoma, neuroblastoma, nasopharyngeal carcinoma, or germ cell tumor
  • Enrolled on the POB natural history protocol 98-C-0037
  • Planned treatment, according to COG or POB protocols, that includes a cisplatin- and/or doxorubicin-containing regimen for sarcoma, neuroblastoma, nasopharyngeal carcinoma, germ cell tumor, or Hodgkin lymphoma OR either a cyclophosphamide/ifosfamide-doxorubicin-containing or cyclophosphamide/dactinomycin-containing regimen for rhabdomyosarcoma
  • No clinical or radiographic signs of spinal cord compression



  • 5 to 35

Performance status:

  • Not specified

Life expectancy:

  • Not specified


  • Platelet count greater than 50,000/mm^3 (transfusion independent)
  • No clotting disorders, including hemophilia


  • PT and PTT normal (within 10% of institution's upper limit of normal)


  • Not specified


  • Not pregnant
  • No casting of 1 or more extremities
  • No other condition that would preclude access to acupuncture points
  • No cognitive impairment


Biologic therapy:

  • Not specified


  • See Disease Characteristics
  • No prior systemic chemotherapy

Endocrine therapy:

  • More than 4 weeks since prior glucocorticoid therapy
  • No concurrent glucocorticoid therapy


  • Not specified


  • Not specified


  • No prior acupuncture
  • No concurrent anticoagulants

Trial Contact Information

Trial Lead Organizations/Sponsors

Children's Oncology Group

  • National Cancer Institute
  • National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health (NCCIH)
Kara Kelly, Study Chair

Link to the current ClinicalTrials.gov record.
NLM Identifier NCT00040911
ClinicalTrials.gov processed this data on April 09, 2015

Note: Information about this trial is from the ClinicalTrials.gov database. The versions designated for health professionals and patients contain the same text. Minor changes may be made to the ClinicalTrials.gov record to standardize the names of study sponsors, sites, and contacts. Cancer.gov only lists sites that are recruiting patients for active trials, whereas ClinicalTrials.gov lists all sites for all trials. Questions and comments regarding the presented information should be directed to ClinicalTrials.gov.