In a US study it was reported that acupuncture worked better than placebo for osteoarthritis. The group that received acupuncture had 40% less pain and more function than those who received sham acupuncture. This is quite an impressive result.

I found out about this study from a blog It is one of my favourite blogs – he writes clearly, provides good information and has a gentle style. The article about this study is in the acupuncture category and can be read here.

This is an exciting finding because the study was large and rigorous. Due to many factors (such as funding constraints) there isn’t a whole lot of research on acupuncture – compared to other modalities researched.

This is unfortunate because acupuncture technology (the acupuncture needle) is cheap.
And one of the major components of the health funding crisis is the cost of technology.

If acupuncture was routinely used for health problems before they became serious the cost of health care would plummet. This would benefit all of us by reducing the cost of health care. Also the trauma and inconvenience of hospital treatment would be avoided and so the patient would benefit from avoiding this – as well as the health problem getting worse.

If this sounds like I’m partisan you are probably right. I think that because the technology is cheap acupuncture can be make a major contribution to making health care affordable for everyone. I also think (contrary to those with a vested interest in making acupuncture more expensive) that acupuncture is simple and easy to learn, but that is the topic for another post.

3 Comments to “Acupuncture and Osteoarthritis”

  1. Viv ;=) says:

    Evan, am delighted to read this post for it has confirmed my belief in acupuncture now, thank you.
    In January’08, my Dad (86) started to complain about the excruciating pain in his lower back, he couldn’t walk up the stairs and with every step he made, he had to hold his breath.
    When he came over to visit early last month, he was already walking in a hunch so I decided to bring him to see the acupuncturist instead of the Dr. The acupuncturist confirmed that it is osteoarthritis.
    After one session of acupuncture, the next day Dad could walk straight and no more grouchy face. By the third treatment within a week, the pain was gone! Till today, no complaints from him 🙂
    It was like magic!

  2. Evan says:


    I trust he has many more good years.

  3. Viv ;=) says:

    Thank you for your kindness, Evan

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