Intended for healthcare professionals

Rapid response to:

Primary Care

Acupuncture for chronic headache in primary care: large, pragmatic, randomised trial

BMJ 2004; 328 doi: (Published 25 March 2004) Cite this as: BMJ 2004;328:744

Rapid Response:

Banjo lessons, and other interventions

Vickers, et al, deny that they even said, "The NHS should consider
further funding of acupuncture." That is literally true. Instead, at
separate three points in the paper, they said "Expansion of NHS
acupuncture services should be considered" and included headache, chronic
headace and migraine as specific indications. In there response, the
authors have therefore made a distinction without a difference.

Regardless, the authors may have demonstrated that for a small
subgroup of patients, doing something (acupuncture of some sort) in
addition to standard care seems to be better than doing nothing extra.
This is not surprising, in light of what is known about such things as
treatment responses, demand characterisitics of caregiver interactions,
etc. As for banjo lessons, I personally need them to improve my technique.
However, I make no claims for their health benefits and I am not
suggesting that anyone else should pay for them.

David Ramey, DVM

Competing interests:
None declared

Competing interests: No competing interests

20 May 2004
David W. Ramey
Private Veterinary Surgeon
Calabasas, CA USA 91311