Pregnant women with depression may benefit from acupuncture

March 1, 2010

Acupuncture treatment may help lower depression symptoms during pregnancy, according to findings published in the March 2010 issue of Obstetrics & Gynecology.

Acupuncture treatment may help lower symptoms of depression during pregnancy, according to findings published in Obstetrics & Gynecology (2010;115[3]:511-520).

In a randomized, controlled trial, researchers at Stanford University enrolled 150 pregnant women who met Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (4th ed) criteria for major depressive disorder. The study randomized women to acupuncture specific for depression or to I of 2 active controls: control acupuncture or massage for an 8-week period.

Women who were randomized to the acupuncture treatment for depression reported a higher rate of reduced symptom severity than women in both controls combined (95% confidence interval [CI], 0.001-0.77; P<</em>.05). Those women who were treated with acupuncture for depression also realized a higher response rate (63%) than women in both controls combined (44.3%; 95% CI, 2.8-75.0; P<</em>.05) and those in the control acupuncture-only cohort (37.5%; 95% CI, 2.2-19.8; P<</em>.05). No significant difference was seen between controls in decreased symptoms and response rates.