Acupuncture for idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis: Protocol for a systematic review

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Background:Patients with idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis (IPF) often suffer from progressive worsening of dyspnea and lung function. Although 2 drugs are now available for IPF treatment, many gaps are still to be filled. Evidences suggest that there may be some beneficial effect of acupuncture on pulmonary diseases. This review aims to systematically determine the efficacy and safety of acupuncture for treating IPF.Methods:The following 8 databases will be searched from their inception to March 20, 2017: PubMed, Embase, Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, Web of Science, Chinese Biomedical Literature Database, China National Knowledge Infrastructure, Chongqing VIP, and Wanfang Data. Randomized controlled trials (RCTs) of acupuncture for IPF without restriction of publication status will be included. Two review authors will independently undertake study selection, extraction of data, and assessment of study quality. Meta-analysis will be conducted after screening of studies if possible. Dichotomous data will be analyzed using odds ratio (OR), and continuous data mean difference (MD). Statistical analysis will be conducted using Review Manager (RevMan) software.Results:This systematic review will provide a detailed summary of the current evidences related to the efficacy and safety of acupuncture in improving breathlessness, exercise limitation, health status impairment of patients with IPF.Conclusion:This evidence may be useful to clinicians, patients, and health policy-makers with regard to the use of acupuncture in IPF treatment.Ethics and dissemination:This systematic review will provide up-to-date information on acupuncture for IPF. This review does not require ethical approval and will be disseminated electronically through a peer-reviewed publication or conference presentations.Trial registration number:PROSPERO 2017:CRD42017059848.

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