Acupuncture is effective for reducing pain and improving joint function in osteoarthritis of the knees
According to results published in the Annals of Internal Medicine December 21st, 2004. Acupuncture provides pain relief and improves function in individuals who have osteoarthritis of the knees. The results were significant “for the first time a clinical trial with sufficient, rigors, size and duration has shown that acupuncture reduces the pain and functional impairment of osteoarthritis of the knee” said Stephen E Shrauss, M.D. NCCAM Director. He further noted that the results of this study showed that acupuncture can be an effective addition to the treatment of patients with osteoarthritis of the knee.
Osteoarthritis affects more than 20 million Americans causing a significant amount of physical disability among those suffering from osteoarthritis of the knee.
This study was extremely important by providing another treatment option to help millions of patients by decreasing their pain and increasing their function. Research suggests one of the ways acupuncture may decrease pain is by altering pain signals. When acupuncture needles are inserted into a specific site, it is felt that they may alter the pain signal by directly stimulating nerves, altering the signaling along nerve cells. In addition, acupuncture increases the release of endorphins, which are the body’s natural painkiller. The release of endorphins and neurotransmitters like serotonin reduce the perception of pain by the brain.
Although we do not know precisely how acupuncture reduces pain, scientific research confirms that it is safe and effective treatment option for many conditions including osteoarthritis of the knee.
Acupuncture is an effective way to reduce pain and increase function in patients suffering from osteoarthritis of the knee.