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Letter on whiplash injury
  1. Jason Lie
  1. Correspondence to Dr Jason Lie, Central Manchester University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, Royal Manchester Children's Hospital, Manchester M13 9WL, UK; jasonlie_888{at}

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I read Adrian White's summaries and commentaries on the Pilot study in whiplash1 2 with great interest. In the United Kingdom, a high percentage of car insurance claims were related to whiplash injury, most commonly as a result from road traffic accidents. It can have a major impact on the patients' income as some can be off work for more than 6 months after injury.3 These patients usually present with multiple trigger points on their trapezius and cervical spine within minutes to hours of their initial injuries. These points can be treated very effectively with acupuncture. I am not surprised that there is so little research into acupuncture for whiplash injury because most of these patients will go straight to an emergency department (ED), rather than their general practitioners or physiotherapies in the community. There are generally more acupuncturists in the community in comparison to the acute settings in the hospital. I personally tried to introduce acupuncture when I was working in ED 2 years ago, but was denied, as the Trust would not provide cover for my practice there and was strongly against its use in ED. Until that becomes possible, a thorough research into the treatment of whiplash injury with acupuncture is always going to be difficult to achieve.


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  • Competing interest None.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; not externally peer reviewed.

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