What changes do patients with a diagnosis of endometriosis perceive whilst undergoing a course of acupuncture treatment?

By Sarah Scott

Abstract

This dissertation is concerned with examining & understanding the changes that four women with a laparoscopic diagnosis of endometriosis experienced whilst undergoing a four-month course of weekly acupuncture treatments & aims to establish whether acupuncture can help in the management of endometriosis symptoms.
Based on the nature & requirements of this research, an in-depth multiple case study was considered to be the most appropriate design.  It provides an account of each woman involved, including the development of their endometriosis, how symptoms manifested and its impact on their lives.  The women each took part in an initial semi-structured interview, then received sixteen weekly sessions of acupuncture, gratis by the researcher.  The semi-structured interviews, together with the feedback from treatment sessions and a validated health-related quality of life (HRQoL) questionnaire specific to endometriosis sufferers formed the basis of qualitative and quantitative patient information respectively.  This meant the findings were based on their personal experiences of acupuncture.

The findings showed improvements in symptoms of endometrialgia across the group.  Findings also revealed improvements in terms of quality of life & emotional well-being in three out of four of the women.

It is hoped that these findings may lead to further large-scle studies & research into the treatment of endometriosis with acupuncture.