Objectives/aims: The aim of this retrospective review was to determine the feasibility, safety, and potential therapeutic effects of acupuncture in an inpatient infant population and to obtain data that would support the design of a randomized, controlled trial of acupuncture in infants. Background:? Hospitalized infants are often exposed to sedative and analgesic medications to facilitate intensive and invasive medical care. With increasing concern about the potential neurotoxic effects of common analgesic and sedative medications, minimizing an infant's exposure to such agents is desirable. Acupuncture can be therapeutic in adults and children, but data in infants are lacking. Methods/materials: We performed a retrospective chart review of infants who received acupuncture during hospitalizations between 2008 and 2010. Demographic data, diagnoses, reason for acupuncture consult, ventilator settings, sedative/analgesic medication regimens, details of acupuncture therapy, and adverse effects were among data collected. Results:? Ten infants were identified in this review, seven of whom had agitation issues, two of whom had feeding difficulties, and one had both symptoms. Six of the eight infants with agitation had a decrease in the use of sedative and analgesic medications over the acupuncture therapy period, and four of five initially requiring mechanical ventilation were successfully weaned. One of the three infants with oral aversion transitioned rapidly to oral intake. Acupuncture therapy was well tolerated, and there were no complications observed. Conclusions: In this small group of hospitalized infants, acupuncture was found to be safe, well tolerated, and therapeutic. More studies are warranted to define the role of acupuncture in this population.
© 2011 Blackwell Publishing Ltd.
Paediatr Anaesth. 2011 Dec 6. doi: 10.1111/j.1460-9592.2011.03743.x. Gentry KR, McGinn KL, Kundu A, Lynn AM. Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine, Seattle Children's Hospital, Seattle, WA, USA ?Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Medicine, School of Medicine, University of Washington, Seattle, WA, USA.