With all the bad news about the side effects of arthritis drugs, results of a study showing the effectiveness of acupuncture at easing pain and improving function in people with osteoarthritis of the knee comes as very good news.
The results of the University of Maryland landmark study, funded by the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine (NCCAM) and the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases (NIAMS) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), were published in the December 21, 2004 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine. This was the longest and largest randomized, controlled clinical trial of acupuncture ever conducted.
To learn more, I contacted lead researcher Brian M. Berman, MD, founder and director of the Center for Integrative Medicine (CFIM) and professor of family medicine at the University of Maryland School of Medicine. He told me that the study involved 570 participants, age 50 or older, who had osteoarthritis of the knee. All had significant knee pain, had never experienced acupuncture, had not had knee surgery in the six previous months and had not used steroid or similar injections. They were randomly assigned to one of three groups...
The participants' progress was assessed at four, eight, 14 and 26 weeks. During this period, they continued to receive standard medical care, including anti-inflammatory and pain medications. Researchers found that...
According to Dr. Berman, true acupuncture was 44% more effective than sham acupuncture for reducing pain and 30% more effective for improving physical function. Both true and sham acupuncture were far more effective than educational guidance.
Dr. Berman and his colleagues concluded that acupuncture is a useful accompaniment to conventional therapies. It is also sometimes used as a stand-alone treatment, although that was not the case in this study. Dr. Berman adds that acupuncture appears to be quite safe, and participants in the study experienced no side effects. Dr. Berman says that while acupuncture is sometimes used alone, their goal was to test it as an adjunct treatment with standard therapies.
If you decide to try acupuncture, choose the practitioner with care. To find a licensed acupuncturist in your area, visit the American Academy of Medical Acupuncture's Web site at www.medicalacupuncture.org. In addition, many insurance companies now cover acupuncture, but check first. Preauthorization may be required.
The Thera Cane Massager is a self massager used to apply pressure to sore muscles. Therapists working in orthopedics and chronic pain programs often face the dilemma of having a patient who has pain, but for whom all the diagnostic tests are negative. Treating soft tissue dysfunction, especially pain in muscle, is all too familiar to us. Treating these, or any other patient in tight managed care environment demands that we emphasis treatment that targets the dysfunction, and self-management skills by the patients. The unique design of the Thera Cane Massager lets you apply deep pressure massage to hard to reach areas of your body on your own. It allows user to "self treat" knotted muscles in neck and back, decreases muscular pain by means of direct applied pressure, has been used for patients of arthritis, stroke, and spinal cord injuries, and can be used by anyone, anytime, anywhere to reduce pain and discomfort. Get one now!
Drive Digital Dual Channel 5 Mode TENS Unit (AGF-5x): If you are looking for a TENS unit, but the high prices of some units have caused you to reconsider, then look no further. The Drive Digital Dual Channel 5 mode TENS Unit (AGF-5x) provides outstanding TENS therapy at a very affordable price. The Drive Digital Dual Channel 5 mode TENS Unit (AGF-5x) comes complete with carrying case, 2 lead wires, 9-volt battery, 1 package of 4 pre-gelled electrodes and operating manual. Get one now!
This article was provided by Bottom Line's Daily Health News. Bottom Line's vast network of leading mainstream, alternative, and complementary practitioners brings you the information you need to make informed decisions about your health. Sign up now for their FREE electronic newsletter.
Reprinted with permission of:
Bottom Line's Daily Health News
281 Tresser Blvd.
Stamford, CT 06901
Leverage our buying power & expertise. We serve GOV/EDU/MIL, employers, facilities & inventors.
Engage in our innovative medical & health care, sales, education & marketing programs.