Acupuncture seems to be no more effective than sham acupuncture in patients suffering from migraines, although both seems to be better than waiting list control intervention.
The researchers of Center for Complementary Medicine Research, Munich, Germany, had divided migraine patients into three groups, where the first group had received the acupuncture treatment given by the specially trained practitioners. The second group was given sham acupuncture treatment, where the needles were placed in random positions and not following the acupuncture guidelines. The third group was put in waiting to see a doctor for treatment. All the patients were required to keep a diary for the headaches (frequency, severity and duration) from four weeks before the trials to ninth or twelfth week of the trial.
The results of the trials have shown that although there isn't much difference in the effectiveness of acupuncture and sham acupuncture treatments for reduction of migraine attacks, these two interventions definitely were more effective than wait list intervention.
51% of the respondents of the acupuncture group and 53% of the respondents of the sham acupuncture group said that their attacks have reduces by about 50% in frequency. In comparison, only 15% of the respondents in the waiting list intervention had said the same thing.