Journal Club

Every other week on Tuesday mornings during ninth trimester, I have a class called Journal Club. The objectives of the course are to sharpen the student's research knowledge and evidence-based practice skills. The final project for the class consists of performing a literature search and finding a paper on a topic of interest to us. We then need to put together a presentation on the research article and share the information with the other interns in the Journal Club.

I performed my literature search on the topic of acupuncture and migraine prophylaxis. The article I found was a randomized-controlled trial in which almost 500 patients were randomly assigned to one of four groups. The first three groups were three different acupuncture protocols, and the fourth group was sham (control) acupuncture. Sham acupuncture means that traditional acupuncture meridian points were not used in the treatment. All four groups received the same amount of treatment, electrical stimulation, and follow-up care. The primary outcomes included the migraine frequency, migraine intensity, and migraine specific quality of life surveys. 

The results of the clinical trial showed that the patients in the acupuncture groups reported fewer days with a migraine compared to the control group. There was no difference in number of days between the three acupuncture groups. The conclusion of the paper was that acupuncture has a prophylactic effect for migraine headaches. It also suggested that further research into the topic is needed. The study was limited by short follow-up periods, the physicians were not blinded, and a small number of acupuncture points were used.

NUHS Whole Health Center - Chicago

Clinic has been getting progressively busier week by week. The Saturday morning shifts are especially busy. It's a great day for a clinic to be open since some patients can't make certain hours during the week. This last Saturday in particular, I saw seven patients during my six-hour shift. That isn't too large of a patient load for a regular practice, but it is in a teaching facility. In a teaching facility, you need to check in with your clinician throughout the patient visit, and there is a large amount of paper work to do. The reason there is a lot of paperwork is that the clinicians want us to be comfortable with multiple types of forms and paperwork so that when we are out on our own we are comfortable with charting.