Welcome to Medivizor!

You're browsing our sample library. Feel free to continue browsing. You can also sign up for free to receive medical information specific to your situation.

Posted by on Aug 7, 2021 in Stroke | 0 comments

In a nutshell

This study compared acupuncture with anti-depressant medications for the treatment of depression in patients who have had a stroke. It found that post-stroke depression was less severe 3-8 weeks after acupuncture compared to anti-depressant medication.

Some background

Depression affects approximately 1 in 3 patients after a stroke. It can greatly impact the quality of life of these patients. Anti-depressants and acupuncture are two treatments often used to improve post-stroke depression (PSD). However, it is not clear which treatment is more effective.

Methods & findings

This study reviewed 14 previous studies involving a total of 1124 patients suffering from PSD. Patients were treated with either acupuncture or antidepressant therapy. Standardized questionnaires were used to measure their level of depression before, during, and after treatment. The Hamilton depression rating scale (HAMD) measures depression on a scale from 0 (no depression) to 50 (very severe depression).  

Patients treated with acupuncture scored better on the HAMD compared to those treated with antidepressants. They scored an average of -4.33 points less compared to the antidepressant group after 8 weeks.

Patients scored significantly better in the acupuncture group on all other depression questionnaires compared to antidepressants. Clinical symptoms were also 15% better in the acupuncture group compared to the antidepressant group.

The bottom line

This study showed that acupuncture may have a role in treating post-stroke depression.

The fine print

This study is based on previous studies, which all used different acupuncture protocols. More research is needed to identify a standard protocol.

Published By :


Date :

Jun 04, 2021

Original Title :

Comparison between acupuncture and antidepressant therapy for the treatment of poststroke depression: Systematic review and meta-analysis.

click here to get personalized updates