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Case Reports in Psychiatry
Volume 2016 (2016), Article ID 6745618, 7 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2016/6745618
Case Report

Acupuncture in the Treatment of a Female Patient Suffering from Chronic Schizophrenia and Sleep Disorders

1Donders Centre for Cognition, Radboud University Nijmegen, Montessorilaan 3, 6525 HR Nijmegen, Netherlands
2Psychiatric Research Institute, LVR-Klinik Bedburg-Hau, Bahnstraße 6, 47551 Bedburg-Hau, Germany
3Research Group of Pain and Neuroscience, Kyung Hee University, No. 47 Gyeonghuidae-Gil, Dongdaemun-Gu, Seoul 130-701, Republic of Korea
4Department of Acupuncture & Meridian of Oriental Medicine, Sang Ji University, 83 Sangjidae-gil, Wonju 26339, Republic of Korea
5Brussels Institute for Applied Linguistics, Free University of Brussels, Pleinlaan 2, 1050 Brussels, Belgium

Received 25 September 2016; Accepted 6 December 2016

Academic Editor: Yasuhiro Kaneda

Copyright © 2016 Peggy Bosch et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Background. The use of acupuncture in the treatment of sleep disorders in patients with chronic schizophrenia is investigated. Case Presentation. We report the case of a 44-year-old female outpatient of German origin who had been suffering from long-term schizophrenia and sleep disorders. The patient was treated with manual acupuncture weekly for 12 weeks, and a psychological assessment was performed before, immediately after, and three months after the acupuncture treatment period. In addition, actiwatch data were collected for 14 days both before and after the acupuncture treatment period. Conclusion. Acupuncture treatment led to a decrease in general psychopathology, less severe sleep problems, and markedly improved cognitive functioning (working memory) in the patient; however, the positive and the negative symptoms remained stable. The actiwatch data revealed a beneficial effect of acupuncture, showing better sleep latency, a trend towards better sleep efficiency, and a decrease in the number of minutes that the patient was awake during the night after acupuncture treatment. In sum, this study showed that acupuncture might be beneficial in the treatment of sleep disorders in patients suffering from chronic schizophrenia, but future, large, randomized (placebo), controlled, clinical trials are needed in order to replicate the present preliminary findings.