Recent progress in sham acupuncture needles

A new ‘sham’ (i.e. fake) needle has been developed for use in electro-acupuncture trials – one which has neither a needle nor a valid electrical connection. [See diagram].

It’s described by Dr Yiu Ming Wong of the Health Science Unit (PEC), Hong Kong Physically Handicapped & Able Bodied Association, Kowloon, Hong Kong, in a letter for Acupuncture in Medicine, February 2018, Volume 36, Issue 1, entitled : ‘Evaluating blinding effectiveness of a novel Ryodoraku sham needle device’. In an experimental setup, 95% of participants reported that they felt they had been treated with a real needle. Dr Wong says that the new sham needle may help determine the efficacy of Ryodoraku electro-acupuncture (REA) in future clinical trials.

A supplementary video (in .mp4 format) which shows the sham needle in use (or rather not in use) is available here for download.

Also see previous post : Sham acupuncture needles – how do they perform?