Tags: knee pain

BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine | Full text | Pain management with acupuncture in osteoarthritis: a systematic review and meta-analysis

“The use of acupuncture is associated with significant reductions in pain intensity, improvement in functional mobility and quality of life.” -via BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine | Full text | Pain management with acupuncture in osteoarthritis: a systematic review and meta-analysis.

needling

“In this systematic review, we found acupuncture administered to adults with osteoarthritis to be associated with a statistically significant reduction in pain intensity, improved functional mobility and improved health-related quality of life. Reductions in pain were greater in trials with longer intervention periods. Though under-reported and inconsistently described, major adverse events with acupuncture were not reported. Subgroup analyses suggest that acupuncture is most effective for reducing osteoarthritic pain when administered for more than four weeks. Outcome assessment for the majority of trials occurred immediately following the intervention period and thus the durability of treatment effects are unknown.” -via BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine | Full text | Pain management with acupuncture in osteoarthritis: a systematic review and meta-analysis.

I see and treat all sorts of pain every day in the clinic.  Time and time again people find acupuncture and TCM to be a wonderful way to manage their pain.  Some injuries and some pains completely resolve with minimal treatment (even after sticking around for years), where others don’t ever totally go away, but patients report less pain, more function and a better quality of life when they receive on-going care.  In my experience osteoarthritis falls into this category.  Generally once we bring the pain down to manageable levels, patients do well with semi-regular care – and I can’t tell you how happy it makes me to see patients who had given up on their favorite activities return to them with minimal discomfort.

 

 

Acupuncture Effective for Post-Surgical pain

While I love it when I can help patients avoid surgery (really, it happens all the time, and it’s awesome!) sometimes they can’t. Surgery is sometimes very necessary and when that’s the case, I support patients with acupuncture, bodywork, internal and external herbs so they can enter and recover from surgery as smoothly as possible.

Acupuncture and Chinese Medicine can be extremely useful tools both pre and post surgery.  Beforehand we can ready the body by helping manage pain, promote normal sleep and digestive cycles and prepare the tissue for the upcoming surgery.  After surgery we can work to reduce swelling and pain and often decrease or discontinue pain medications that have unwanted side-effects – all of this helps the surgical trauma heal quickly and appropriately.

A recent study in Regional Analgesia and Pain Medicine found that acupuncture after a total knee replacement reduced the amount of pain patients were in as well as reducing the need for and amount of pain medications required.  Those in the acupuncture group also had fewer adverse reactions (nausea and vomiting) due to anesthesia.

acupuncture for post-op TKRResults: This study comprised 60 patients (30 in the study group and 30 in the control group). The fentanyl requirement via patient-controlled analgesia in the study group was lower [mean (SD), 620.7 (258.2) vs 868.6 (319.3) [mu]g; P = 0.002). The time to first request for fentanyl was longer in the study group. Pain intensity on a 100-mm visual analog scale was lower in the study group in the first 24 hours after the operation. The incidence of analgesia-related adverse effects of nausea and vomiting was lower in the study group. The success of blinding was not significantly different between the 2 groups (P = 0.731).

Conclusions: The data obtained from this clinical trial demonstrate the potential advantages of using acupuncture for postoperative pain control after total knee arthroplasty.
Acupuncture for Pain Relief After Total Knee Arthroplasty: A Randomized Controlled Trial. Regional Anesthesia and Pain Medicine.

If you or someone you know is preparing for or recently underwent surgery – we’d love to help – Give us a call or book an appointment online!  What questions do you have about pre or post-op acupuncture?