To determine the effectiveness and safety of acupuncture for perimenopausal depression.
We searched the Cochrane Central Register of Controlled Trials, PubMed, EMBASE, CNKI, VIP Citation Databases, Wan Fang, and online trial registries such as for randomized controlled trials (RCTs) assessing the efficacy and safety of acupuncture for perimenopausal depression. Literature screening, data extraction, and determination of the risk of bias were performed by two researchers independently. The extracted data were pooled and meta-analyzed using RevMan5.3 software.
In total, 16 RCTs covering 1311 patients were enrolled. Overall, the results showed that acupuncture was more effective in the treatment of perimenopausal depression than antidepressants (OR = 2.68, 95% CI (1.84, 3.90), < 0.00001). Furthermore, HAMD scores in the manual acupuncture group and electroacupuncture group were lower than those of antidepressants (manual acupuncture vs. antidepressants (MD = -2.35, 95% CI (-2.93, -1.77), < 0.00001) and electroacupuncture vs. antidepressants (MD = -1.2, 95% CI (-1.92, -0.48), =0.001)). Data analysis revealed that the treatment effect of acupuncture was more stable than that of antidepressants (MD = -2.4, 95% CI (-3.37, -1.43), < 0.00001). Moreover, acupuncture was safer than antidepressants based on the incidence of adverse events (OR = 0.23, 95% CI (0.1, 0.52), =0.0004). But acupuncture has no effect on estrogen levels ( ≥ 0.05).
Acupuncture for perimenopausal depression is safe and effective. Moreover, it has more stable long-term effects than antidepressants and hormone replacement therapy (HRT). We recommend acupuncture as a clinical treatment of perimenopausal depression.

Copyright © 2020 Xiao Xiao et al.