Contralateral Acupuncture in the Treatment of Chronic Shoulder Pain

This study has been completed.
University of Maryland
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Ming Yi, PhD, principle investigator, Peking University Identifier:
First received: November 21, 2012
Last updated: April 12, 2015
Last verified: May 2014
According to traditional Chinese medical theories, a variety of acupuncture formulas can treat diseases such as pain. For example, stimulating acupoints either local or distal to the pain site has been proposed under some conditions. We hypothesize that stimulating acupoints contralateral to the pain site can successfully treat chronic shoulder pain.

Condition Intervention Phase
Shoulder Pain
Procedure: Acupuncture
Other: Control
Phase 2

Study Type: Interventional
Study Design: Allocation: Randomized
Endpoint Classification: Safety/Efficacy Study
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Masking: Double Blind (Subject, Caregiver, Investigator, Outcomes Assessor)
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Phase II Study of Contralateral Acupuncture in the Treatment of Chronic Shoulder Pain

Resource links provided by NLM:

Further study details as provided by Peking University:

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • Visual analogue scale (VAS) [ Time Frame: before and 2, 4, 8 and 16 weeks after treatment start ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
    Pain assessment

Secondary Outcome Measures:
  • The MOS item short from health survey (SF-36) [ Time Frame: before and 8 and 16 weeks after treatment start ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
    Quality of life assessment

  • Constant-Murley score [ Time Frame: before and 2, 4, 8 and 16 weeks after treatment start ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
    shoulder motion score

  • DASH score [ Time Frame: before and 2, 4, 8 and 16 weeks after treatment start ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]

Enrollment: 80
Study Start Date: September 2011
Study Completion Date: August 2013
Primary Completion Date: April 2013 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
Arms Assigned Interventions
Experimental: Acupuncture
Experimental group
Procedure: Acupuncture
Acupuncture in the following acupoints on the contralateral side of pain site: Jiantong, Zhongzhu, Houxi, and Quchi. The patient will receive 5 treatments (each lasts 30 min) per week for four weeks.
Sham Comparator: Waiting list
Control group
Other: Control
Patients in the waiting list group received conventional orthopaedic therapy including physical exercise, heat or cold therapy. 50 mg diclofenac daily could be taken when the patient suffered from the pain. Injections or cortisone applications of any kind were not allowed.


Ages Eligible for Study:   25 Years to 65 Years
Genders Eligible for Study:   Both
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Uni-lateral shoulder pain for 6 weeks to 2 years
  • VAS score ≤ 50
  • 25-65 years of age
  • Positive Neer's or Hawkins' signs
  • Accept the informed consent

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Shoulder pain of neurological origins
  • Shoulder pain of neck origins
  • Systematic arthritis
  • Wrist problems
  • Previous shoulder, arm, neck or chest fractures or surgeries
  • Mental diseases
  • Pregnancy
  • Inability to work for more than 3 months before treatment
  • Diabetes
  • Coagulative dysfunction
  • Corticosterone or physicotherapy experience on the affected shoulder in the last 6 months
  • Failure to accept the informed consent
  Contacts and Locations
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Please refer to this study by its identifier: NCT01733914

China, Sichuan
Province Hospital of Integrative Chinese and Western Medicine, Sichuan
Chengdu, Sichuan, China, 100191
Sponsors and Collaborators
Peking University
University of Maryland
Principal Investigator: Ming Yi, PhD Peking University
  More Information

No publications provided

Responsible Party: Ming Yi, PhD, principle investigator, Dr, Peking University Identifier: NCT01733914     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: 2007CB512501
Study First Received: November 21, 2012
Last Updated: April 12, 2015
Health Authority: China: Ethics Committee

Keywords provided by Peking University:
shoulder pain

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Shoulder Pain
Joint Diseases
Musculoskeletal Diseases
Signs and Symptoms processed this record on November 27, 2015