For the study, 80 such patients received 12 acupuncture sessions over the course of 12 weeks. Study results revealed that acupuncture led to improved wellbeing, although it failed to change the number of medications participants were taking or reduce their visits to the doctor. In addition, many study members said they felt more aware of their stress levels and more capable of managing their stress after undergoing acupuncture.
In the year leading up to the study, participants had consulted their general practitioners at least eight times about unexplained symptoms. Many of the participants were dealing with chronic pain, fatigue, and emotional problems that affected their ability to work, socialize, and carry out everyday tasks. The participants were also prone to anxiety and mood problems.
According to study author Charlotte Paterson, acupuncture holds promise as a way to "improve the quality of life for a group of patients for whom traditional biomedicine has little in the way of effective diagnosis and treatment."