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Acupuncture for Cancer-Related Anorexia: a Review of the Current Evidence

Authors
  • Liu, Wenli1
  • Lopez, Gabriel1
  • Narayanan, Santhosshi1
  • Qdaisat, Aiham2
  • Geng, Yimin2
  • Zhou, Shouhao3
  • Spano, Michael1
  • Underwood, Susan1
  • Eclache, Marie G.1
  • Dev, Rony1
  • Dalal, Shalini1
  • Bruera, Eduardo1
  • Cohen, Lorenzo1
  • 1 The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, 1515 Holcombe Blvd, Houston, TX, 77030, USA , Houston (United States)
  • 2 The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center, Houston, TX, USA , Houston (United States)
  • 3 Pennsylvania State College of Medicine, Hershey, PA, USA , Hershey (United States)
Type
Published Article
Journal
Current Oncology Reports
Publisher
Springer-Verlag
Publication Date
May 05, 2021
Volume
23
Issue
7
Identifiers
DOI: 10.1007/s11912-021-01067-1
Source
Springer Nature
Keywords
License
Yellow

Abstract

Purpose of ReviewLoss of appetite/anorexia is extremely common among cancer patients, affecting as many as half of newly diagnosed patients and 70% of patients with advanced disease. Effective management of this disabling symptom of cancer remains a major challenge in the field of oncology. We conducted a systematic review of the current evidence on acupuncture and/or moxibustion as an intervention for cancer-related anorexia.Recent FindingsAcupuncture, as a part of traditional Chinese medicine practice, has demonstrated effectiveness in managing many cancer- and treatment-related symptoms, especially chemotherapy-induced or postoperative nausea. However, the efficacy of acupuncture in treating cancer-related anorexia/loss of appetite is not clear.SummaryThe current level of evidence is insufficient to make a definitive conclusion on the benefit of acupuncture/moxibustion for treating chronic cancer–related anorexia/appetite problems. Future large randomized controlled trials of high methodological quality are needed.

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