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Transient paralysis during acupuncture therapy: a case report of an adverse event
  1. Anne Beable
  1. Correspondence to Dr Anne Beable, Trevithick Surgery, Basset Street, Camborne, Cornwall TR14 8TT, UK; info{at}


A patient with apparently well-controlled epilepsy with a painful musculoskeletal condition was treated successfully with two sessions of acupuncture. However, 4 h after the first treatment and during the second, an adverse event involving impairment of consciousness occurred. The patient subsequently experienced an increased frequency of complex partial seizures resulting in the loss of his driving licence. A detailed retrospective review of the past medical history indicated that the patient probably had comorbidities in the form of rapid eye movement sleep behaviour disorder and dysfunctional somatosensory/vestibular processing. Acupuncture may have triggered the adverse event via shared neurosubstrates. This adverse event raises possible implications regarding safe clinical acupuncture practice.


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