Version of Breech Fetuses by Moxibustion With Acupuncture: A Randomized Controlled Trial

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Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To assess the efficacy of moxibustion (heating of the acupuncture needle with an igniting charcoal moxa stick) with acupuncture for version of breech presentations after 33 4/7 weeks of gestation to reduce their rate at 37 weeks of gestation and at delivery.

METHODS:

This was a randomized placebo-controlled single-blind trial including 328 pregnant women recruited in a university hospital center between 33 4/7 and 35 4/7 weeks of gestation. Moxibustion with acupuncture or inactivated laser (placebo) treatment was applied to point BL 67 for six sessions. The principal endpoint was the percentage of fetuses in breech presentation at 37 2/7 weeks of gestation.

RESULTS:

The study included 328 women randomized into two groups: moxibustion with acupuncture (n=164) or placebo (n=164). The percentage of fetuses in breech presentation at 37 2/7 weeks of gestation was not significantly different in both groups (72.0 in the moxibustion with acupuncture group compared with 63.4% in the placebo group, relative risk 1.13, 95% confidence interval 0.98–1.32, P=.10).

CONCLUSION:

Treatment by moxibustion with acupuncture was not effective in correcting breech presentation in the third trimester of pregnancy.

CLINICAL TRIAL REGISTRATION:

ClinicalTrials.gov, www.clinicaltrials.gov, NCT01487590.

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