Table 3:

Primary and secondary outcome measures for the use of acupuncture for the prophylaxis of migraine*

Shaoyang-specific acupuncture
n = 121
Shaoyang-nonspecific acupuncture
n = 119
Yangming-specific acupuncture
n = 118
Sham acupuncture (control)
n = 118
Comparisons between acupuncture groups; p value
Outcome measureMean (95% CI)p valueMean (95% CI)p valueMean (95% CI)p valueMean (95% CI)Shaoyang- specific v. Shaoyang- nonspecificShaoyang- specific v. Yangming- specificShaoyang- nonspecific v. Yangming- specific
No. of days with a migraine
Interval, wk
 Baseline§6.3 (5.4–7.2)5.6 (5.0–6.2)6.1 (5.3–7.0)5.5 (4.8–6.2)
 1–4§4.2 (3.7–4.8)0.313.7 (3.2–4.3)0.0234.1 (3.6–4.6)0.174.6 (4.0–5.2)0.210.720.37
 5–82.8 (2.2–3.3)0.082.7 (2.2–3.3)0.072.9 (2.3–3.4)0.163.4 (2.9–4.0)0.960.740.71
 13–162.2 (1.7–2.7)0.0032.1 (1.6–2.6)< 0.0012.4 (1.9–2.9)0.0113.3 (2.8–3.8)0.660.670.38
Frequency of migraine
Interval, wk
 Baseline§4.0 (3.6–4.3)4.0 (3.7–4.3)4.0 (3.7–4.4)3.9 (3.6–4.2)
 1–4§3.0 (2.7–3.4)0.0052.7 (2.4–3.0)< 0.0013.0 (2.6–3.3)0.0023.7 (3.4–4.0)0.140.730.26
 5–82.0 (1.7–2.3)0.0092.1 (1.8–2.4)0.0412.3 (2.0–2.6)0.202.6 (2.3–2.9)0.570.180.44
 13–161.6 (1.3–1.9)> 0.0011.7 (1.4–2.0)0.0021.9 (1.6–2.2)0.0242.4 (2.1–2.7)0.440.120.43
Intensity of migraine
Interval, wk
 Baseline2.0 (1.9–2.1)2.1 (2.0–2.2)2.0 (1.9–2.1)2.0 (1.9–2.1)
 1–4§1.7 (1.4–1.9)0.371.8 (1.5–2.0)0.671.7 (1.5–2.0)0.451.8 (1.6–2.1)0.640.900.74
 5–8§1.2 (1.0–1.4)0.081.4 (1.2–1.7)0.951.4 (1.2–1.6)0.781.4 (1.2–1.7)0.100.140.84
 13–161.0 (0.9–1.3)0.0021.4 (1.2–1.6)0.311.3 (1.1–1.5)0.171.5 (1.3–1.8)0.0300.070.72
Intensity of pain (Visual Analogue Scale score)**
Interval, wk
 Baseline§5.4 (5.1–5.7)5.7 (5.3–6.0)5.4 (5.1–5.7)5.5 (5.2–5.8)
 1–4§4.1 (3.8–4.4)0.0184.4 (4.1–4.7)0.264.3 (4.0–4.6)0.094.6 (4.3–4.9)0.210.490.58
 5–83.1 (2.7–3.5)< 0.0013.8 (3.4–4.1)0.243.8 (3.4–4.1)0.224.1 (3.7–4.4)0.0090.0100.97
 13–162.8 (2.4–3.1)< 0.0013.5 (3.1–3.9)0.0053.6 (3.3–4.0)0.0194.3 (3.9–4.6)0.0050.0010.61
MSQ score,†† restrictive subscale
Interval, wk
 Baseline§61.2 (58.7–63.7)58.5 (55.6–61.4)60.3 (57.9–62.7)58.5 (55.8–61.2)0.540.0490.17
 1–4§74.4 (72.1–76.7)0.00473.4 (71.1–75.7)0.02371.2 (68.9–73.5)0.3669.6 (67.3–71.9)0.080.0140.46
 5–880.0 (77.2–82.8)< 0.00176.6 (73.9–79.4)0.0775.2 (72.5–77.9)0.2773.1 (70.4–75.8)0.040.0200.77
 13–1681.9 (79.1–84.7)< 0.00177.8 (75.1–80.6)0.0177.3 (74.5–80.0)0.02272.7 (70.0–75.5)0.330.0190.17
MSQ score,†† preventive subscale
Interval, wk
 Baseline§70.5 (67.6–73.4)66.5 (63.1–69.9)69.5 (66.5–72.5)66.9 (63.4–70.4)0.180.0150.27
 1–4§81.9 (79.6–84.2)0.00180.3 (77.9–82.6)0.02378.0 (75.7–80.3)0.3876.5 (74.2–78.8)0.0470.0060.43
 5–885.4 (82.8–88.0)< 0.00182.9 (80.3–85.4)0.03680.9 (78.4–83.4)0.3179.0 (76.5–81.6)0.790.320.47
 13–1687.2 (84.7–89.7)< 0.00183.7 (81.2–86.1)0.01982.3 (79.9–84.7)0.1279.5 (77.1–82.0)0.090.0060.31
MSQ score,†† functional subscale
Interval, wk
 Baseline§70.3 (66.9–73.7)67.0 (63.4–70.6)71.0 (67.9–74.1)69.0 (65.9–72.1)0.0340.0070.54
 1–4§81.7 (79.2–84.2)0.04581.2 (78.8–83.7)0.08280.0 (77.5–82.4)0.3178.1 (75.7–80.6)
 5–886.9 (84.2–89.7)0.00383.6 (80.8–86.3)0.1981.6 (78.9–84.3)0.7781.0 (78.3–83.7)0.210.720.37
 13–1688.0 (85.1–90.8)0.00883.7 (81.0–86.5)0.5882.5 (79.8–85.3)0.9682.6 (79.9–85.4)0.960.740.71
  • Note: CI = confidence interval, MSQ = Migraine Specific Quality of Life Questionnaire.

  • * Except for baseline data, means and confidence intervals are adjusted for center and respective baseline values.

  • Compared to sham acupuncture group.

  • P values for the intensity of migraine were derived from Poison regression; all others were derived from analysis of variance.

  • § Patients received acupuncture or sham acupuncture during weeks 1–4; baseline refers to the four-week period before treatment.

  • Frequency of migraine attacks is defined as the number of episodes of migraine attacks separated by pain free intervals of at least 48 hours.

  • ** The intensity of migraine scale ranges from 0 to 3, a higher score indicates more intense pain.

  • †† Higher values on the MSQ refer to better quality of life. Range of scores is from 0 to 100.