Acupuncture for hot flashes in patients with prostate cancer

Tomasz M. Beer, Maria Benavides, Sandra L. Emmons, Margaret Hayes, Guohui Liu, Mark Garzotto, Deirdre Donovan, Nina Katovic, Caron Reeder, Kristine Eilers

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

32 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objectives: To determine the effect of acupuncture on hot flash frequency and intensity, quality of life, and sleep quality in patients undergoing hormonal therapy for prostate cancer. Hot flashes are a common adverse effect of hormonal therapy for prostate cancer. Methods: Men who had a hot flash score >4 who were receiving androgen deprivation therapy for prostate cancer underwent acupuncture with electrostimulation biweekly for 4 weeks, then weekly for 6 weeks, using a predefined treatment plan. The primary endpoint was a 50% reduction in the hot flash score after 4 weeks of therapy, calculated from the patients' daily hot flash diaries. The hot flash-related quality of life and sleep quality and biomarkers potentially related to hot flashes, including serotonin, calcitonin gene-related peptide, and urinary 5-hydroxyindoleacetic acid, were examined. Results: A total of 25 men were enrolled from September 2003 to April 2007. Of these, 22 were eligible and evaluable. After 4 weeks, 9 (41%, 95% confidence interval 21%-64%) of 22 patients had had a >50% reduction in the hot flash score. Of the 22 patients, 12 (55%, 95% confidence interval 32%-76%) met this response definition at any point during the therapy course. No patient had a significant increase in hot flash score during therapy. A reduced hot flash score was associated with improvement in the hot flash-related quality of life and sleep quality. Conclusions: Multiple placebo-controlled trials have demonstrated a 25% response rate to placebo treatment for hot flashes. Of the 22 patients, 41% had responded by week 4 and 55% overall in the present pilot study, providing evidence of a potentially meaningful benefit. Additional studies of acupuncture for hot flashes in this population are warranted.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1182-1188
Number of pages7
JournalUrology
Volume76
Issue number5
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 1 2010

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Urology

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    Beer, T. M., Benavides, M., Emmons, S. L., Hayes, M., Liu, G., Garzotto, M., Donovan, D., Katovic, N., Reeder, C., & Eilers, K. (2010). Acupuncture for hot flashes in patients with prostate cancer. Urology, 76(5), 1182-1188. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.urology.2010.03.033