Osteoarthritis of the knee is very common, affecting almost one-tenth of the population over age 50. Osteoarthritis is an incurable illness , so treatment is aimed at improving patients' quality of life, which is why acupuncture was studied. Acupuncture in addition to drug treatment for osteoarthritis of the knee is more effective than drug treatment alone, shows new research out of Spain.
Eighty-eight patients were divided into two groups. One group received acupuncture plus the anti-inflammatory drug diclofenac (Arthrotec), and the other received dummy acupuncture plus diclofenac. After 12 weeks, the acupuncture group had a greater reduction in pain and stiffness, improved physical functioning, and an improved quality of life.
Researchers conclude saying that acupuncture as a complementary therapy to drug treatment is more effective than drug treatment alone. However, they say a 12-week observation period may be insufficient to evaluate the effects of treatment thus they say that a longer observation period is required in future to evaluate the same .