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Acupuncture does not appear to change some of the objective measures of infant colic, despite leading to decreases in crying time and subjective parental perception of benefit, conclude Swedish researchers. Data from a randomised trial of 147 infants who fulfilled the criteria for infantile colic was subjected to secondary analysis. The infants were randomly allocated to standardised minimal acupuncture at Hegu L.I.-4 for five seconds, semi-standardised individual acupuncture with a maximum of five needle insertions for up to 30 seconds, or no acupuncture. Previously published data from the trial showed a decrease in crying time for the acupuncture groups. However, there were no differences between groups in terms of defaecation, feeding or sleeping at any time point according to data reported in parental diaries. At follow-up phone call, more parents in the acupuncture groups perceived that feeding and sleep had changed, and that the symptoms of colic had improved.

The effect of two types of minimal acupuncture on stooling, sleeping and feeding in infants with colic: secondary analysis of a multicentre RCT in Sweden (ACU-COL). Acupunct Med. 2021 Apr;39(2):106-115.