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Nystagmus following acupuncture – a case report
  1. Angela Bradbury, patient1,
  2. Jose Botancor, associate general practitioner2,
  3. Adrian White, editor3
  1. 1
    Congleton, Cheshire, UK
  2. 2
    Macclesfield, Cheshire, UK
  3. 3
    Acupuncture in Medicine
  1. Editor{at}


A 50 year old woman experienced an episode of vertigo and nystagmus about 10 minutes after receiving her first treatment with acupuncture for shoulder pain. The nystagmus was confirmed by several health professionals. She had no previous history of nystagmus, and the symptom was not associated with feelings of faintness. Her blood pressure was 90/50 at the onset of symptoms but returned to normal while the symptoms continued. She recovered spontaneously after about five hours. Nystagmus after acupuncture has not been unequivocally reported before, though dizziness associated with hypotension is common. In this case the association may be coincidental, or a focal neurological response to needling; if the latter, then it should be regarded as an unavoidable idiosyncratic reaction.

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