A recent study compared cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) with acupuncture for insomnia in cancer survivors. The study reported that CBT may be more effective than acupuncture, particularly among patients with mild insomnia.

The study was presented at the 2018 American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) Annual Meeting in Chicago this week.

Insomnia affects nearly 60% of cancer survivors and can severely affect quality of life. In this study, 160 cancer survivors diagnosed with insomnia were randomly assigned to receive either CBT for insomnia or acupuncture. CBT for insomnia consists of cognitive restructuring, relaxation training, stimulus control, sleep restriction, and education. Acupuncture involves the insertion of thin needles under the skin. Patients were followed for 20 weeks after treatment and the insomnia severity index was used to assess insomnia.

The insomnia severity score was reduced by 10.9 points in the CBT group, compared with 8.3 points in the acupuncture group. CBT-I was found to be significantly more effective overall for insomnia compared with acupuncture. Both treatments were well tolerated, and improvements to sleep and quality of life were maintained for up to 20 weeks.

Read more in Cancer Therapy Advisor here