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Twenty patients randomly assigned to an experimental and a control group participated in a double blind study to assess the effectiveness of acupuncture in bronchial asthma, using the peak expiratory flow rate (PEFR) as an index of bronchial patency. All patients in the control group showed a significant improvement in their PEFR while only 3 patients in the treated group showed an improvement. A subjective improvement and a reduction in drug dosages were observed in both groups. It is concluded that acupuncture has a placebo effect in bronchial asthma.