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Topics in Complementary and Alternative Therapies (PDQ®)

Acupuncture

Acupuncture is a part of traditional Chinese medicine used in China and other Asian countries for thousands of years. In patients with cancer, acupuncture is usually used to relieve symptoms, treat side effects of therapy, and improve quality of life. It may help the immune system work better, control nausea and vomiting caused by chemotherapy, and relieve cancer pain. Acupuncture may treat weight loss, anxiety, depression, insomnia, poor appetite, and gastrointestinal symptoms (constipation and diarrhea).

  • See the PDQ patient summary on Acupuncture for more information.
  • Updated: June 13, 2014