Last updated on April 2018

Battlefield Acupuncture for Low Back Pain


Brief description of study

The purpose of this study is to determine the effect of Battlefield Acupuncture (BFA) on outcomes for pain, sleep, and physical activity level in an active duty military sample with subacute or chronic lower back pain (LBP). BFA is a form of auricular acupuncture (AA) that has been implemented in many Department of Defense (DoD)/Veterans Affairs (VA) medical settings to alleviate acute or chronic pain. BFA uses five predetermined locations in a defined sequence to place semi-permanent needles in the ear. Subacute lower back pain is pain that has persistently lasted from four to twelve weeks. Chronic lower back pain is pain that lasts more than 12 weeks.

Hypothesis 1: Participants with subacute or chronic LBP will have reduced pain using BFA as compared to placebo.

Hypothesis 2: Participants with subacute or chronic LBP will have improved physical activity using BFA as compared to placebo.

Hypothesis 3: Participants with subacute or chronic LBP will have improved sleep quality as compared to placebo.

The secondary study aims are:

  1. To explore the effects of BFA two weeks following the treatment for LBP.
  2. Do positive outcomes appreciated with BFA persist over two weeks?
  3. What is the pain medication usage during and after intervention treatments?
  4. To explore the effectiveness of BFA on trunk flexion mobility and balance.
  5. Does pain reduction improve trunk flexion and balance?
  6. Does improved truck flexion mobility and balance contribute to increased physical activity?

Clinical Study Identifier: NCT03491124

Contact Investigators or Research Sites near you

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David Wilson, BS

Malcolm Grow Medical Clinics and Surgery Center
Andrews Air Force Base, MD United States
1.54miles
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Recruitment Status: Open


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