This study formed part of a medical student elective and was conducted over a six-week period from April to June in the Acupuncture Clinic of the First Teaching Hospital of Tianjin Traditional Medical College, China. It is a descriptive cross-sectional study investigating the painful conditions for which Chinese consult an acupuncturist. The effectiveness of acupuncture as an analgesic was assessed subjectively using a visual analogue scale to estimate the amount of pain before and after treatment. A significant improvement was seen following acupuncture. The patients' own views on the efficacy of acupuncture in controlling their pain were also noted: this resulted in a mean effectiveness rating of 74.4%.
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