This study is testing the safety and effectiveness of acupuncture in controlling pain
related to the removal of partially impacted mandibular third molars. Acupuncture is the
Chinese art of healing by inserting needles into the skin.
Participants ages 18 - 40 are given an initial x-ray to determine if one lower molar is
partially bony impacted. Eligible participants will then undergo standard oral surgery to
remove the impacted molar. A local anesthetic will be used prior to surgery. Directly
after surgery the participant will be assigned to one of three groups. Participants will
not be able to select which group they are assigned. Participants will receive either real
or sham (fake) acupuncture as a treatment for post-extraction pain. After the initial
acupuncture treatment, participants are required to remain for six hours at the dental site
to be monitored. If a participants discomfort is measured as moderate or higher then a
second acupuncture treatment will be administered. All participants will be administered
questionnaires during the day of surgery. Participants will also be required to complete
two diaries during the seven days following surgery. On the seventh day, participants
return to have stitches removed and hand in completed diaries.
- At least one lower mandibular molar with partial bony impaction
- General good health
- Minimum body weight of 99 lbs.
- Able to read and write in English