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J Korean Med Rehabi 2018 Oct; 28(4): 11-20  
Acupuncture Treatment for Rotator Cuff Disorder: A Systematic Review
Published online October 31, 2018
Copyright © 2018 The Society of Korean Medicine Rehabilitation.

Hyun-Min Choi, K.M.D.*, Soo-Yeon Han, K.M.D.*, Doo-Ree Hwang, K.M.D., Jun-Hyuk Kang, K.M.D., Ph.D.*

Departments of Korean Medicine Rehabilitation*, Acupuncture and Moxibustion Medicine, Dongseo Korean Medical Hospital
Correspondence to: Jun-Hyuk Kang, Department of Korean Medicine Rehabilitation, Dongseo Korean Medical Hospital, 1365-14 Seongsan-ro, Seodaemun-gu, Seoul 03726, Korea
TEL (02) 320-7807
FAX (02) 337-7917
Received: September 12, 2018; Revised: October 4, 2018; Accepted: October 5, 2018
This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License ( which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Objectives To systematically explore the effects of acupuncture treatment for rotator cuff disorders and review the clinical trials.
Methods We searched 9 electronic databases (PubMed, Cochrane central, Embase, China National Knowledge Infrastructure [CNKI], Korea Institute of Science and Technology Information [KISTI], National Digital Science Library [NDSL], Korean studies Information Service System [KISS], Research Information Sharing Service [RISS], Oriental Medicine Advanced Searching Integrated System [OASIS]) to find randomized controlled trials that used acupunture treatment for rotator cuff disorders. We assessed the designs of the randomized controlled trials and the method of acupuncture treatment according to the Standards for Reporting Interventions in Clinical Trials of Acupuncture (STRICTA). The methodological quality of randomized controlled trials were assessed using the Cochrane Risk of Bias (RoB) tool.
Results Total 5 trials were reviewed. 4 out of 5 randomized clinical trials reported meaningful effects of acupuncture treatments compared to control group. However risk of bias seemed high.
Conclusions Although the results suggest that acupuncture treatment has favorable effects for rotator cuff disorders, most of the studies included methodologically high risk of bias. Thus, well designed randomized clinical trials which evaluate the effects of acupuncture treatment for rotator cuff disorders should be encouraged.
Keywords : Acupuncture, Rotator cuff, Shoulder impingement syndrome, Review

October 2018, 28 (4)

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