The UK ACUPPUNCTURE RESEARCH RESOURCE CENTRE (ARRC) is a specialist resource for acupuncture research information; the only such resource in the land. It is funded by the British Acupuncture Council (BAcC) and was established in 1994 by the BAcC in partnership with the Foundation for Research in Traditional Chinese Medicine.
The ARRC organise an annual meeting. This year’s meeting is special because it is their 20th! It is scheduled to take place in London on 17th March. In case you are already busy that day, or you want to save the £120 registration fee, I have copied for you the programme below and am even able to inform you about the content of each lecture.
- Hugh MacPherson – Celebrating twenty years of acupuncture research
- Lee Hullender Rubin – The Impact of Whole Systems Traditional Chinese Medicine on In Vitro Fertilization Outcomes – A Retrospective Cohort Study
- Robert Davis – Beyond Efficacy: Conducting and translating research for policy-makers considering acupuncture reimbursement in a small, rural US state
- Lee Hullender Rubin – Acupuncture Augmentation of Lidocaine Treatment of Provoked, localized Vulvodynia – a Feasability and Acceptability Pilot Study
- Florian Beissner – A TCM-based psychotherapy with acupuncture for endometriosis
- Beverley De Valois – Using moxa on St 36 to reduce chemotherapy-induced pancytopenia: a feasibility study
- Ian Appleyard – Warm needle acupuncture for osteoarthritis of the knee: a pilot study
- Ed Fraser – Stand Easy: An Evaluation of the acceptability and effectiveness of acupuncture as a treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder for veterans in Norfolk
Having attended plenty of such meetings in my time, I can give you a fairly good idea about the contents of the 8 lectures. Below, I provide succinct (and slightly satirical) summaries of what the presenters will tell their audience on the 17th:
- Despite difficult circumstances, we (the ARRC) have done very well indeed. We managed to publish lots of papers, and we made sure that not a single one reported a negative result. That would be bad for business. We are optimistic about the future provided we get some funding, of course.
- Whole Systems Traditional Chinese Medicine has a profoundly positive effect on the outcomes of In Vitro fertilization. We are totally balled over! Only the most pedantic sceptics would have reservations and might argue that the study had no controls and was retrospective. But who cares, we believe in positive results, and therefore, we never listen to criticism.
- Because efficacy is a sticky issue in the realm of acupuncture, it is much wiser to tackle policy makers by persuading them that they can save money (lots of it), if they implement the abundant use of acupuncture. The evidence for this notion is flimsy to say the least, but policy makers do not understand the science (and neither do we).
- Our study showed that Acupuncture Augmentation of Lidocaine Treatment is extremely good for vulvodynia. We are very impressed, over the moon even. Of course, this was a feasibility study and we should really only conclude that a full study may be feasible, but let’s not be nit-picking.
- Based on my very extensive experience, I am able to confirm that TCM-based psychotherapy with acupuncture is an excellent therapy for endometriosis. Rigorous, controlled clinical trials do not exist, but my findings are so clear that, quite honestly, we do not need them.
- Using moxa on St 36 to reduce chemotherapy-induced pancytopenia is feasible. Isn’t that lovely?
- My trial of warm needle acupuncture for osteoarthritis of the knee showed most encouraging results. Of course, this was only a pilot study, and from it we should really only conclude that a proper study may be feasible, but let’s not be holier than thou!
- Our results demonstrate that acupuncture as a treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder is amazingly effective. A breakthrough! What is more, veterans found it most acceptable. The study is not rigorous, but I don’t mind. I advocate this treatment to be rolled out nationally as a matter of urgency.
So, there you are; that’s all you need to know about the 20th annual meeting of the ARRC.
You don’t need to go.
I have thus saved you £120!
No, I don’t expect thanks – I prefer, if you would send half of this amount (£60) to my account.