Electroacupuncture Outperforms Gabapentin and Placebo in Treating Hot Flashes in Breast Cancer Survivors

Dr. Jun J. Mao, principal investigator for the CHOICE Study, is pleased to announce the August 24, 2015 publication, “Electroacupuncture Versus Gabapentin for Hot Flashes Among Breast Cancer Survivors: A Randomized Placebo-Controlled Trial”, in the Journal of Clinical Oncology. The study compared the effectiveness of electroacupuncture, sham acupuncture, Gabapentin (Neurontin), and a placebo pill in relieving bothersome hot flashes in women who are breast cancer survivors.


Electroacupuncture was most effective in relieving hot flashes, followed by sham acupuncture, placebo pills, and finally Gabapentin. Interestingly, the study’s results also showed that receiving sham acupuncture produces stronger, longer-lasting relief from hot flashes than swallowing a placebo pill. This study may serve as a basis for future investigations of how to maximize placebo effects in treating medical issues cancer survivors face. For further reading, please refer to coverage of the study by Medscape and HealthDay. Congratulations to Dr. Mao on the publication of this study that will, like the CHOICE Study, inform future treatments offered to cancer survivors!