COMPARATIVE STUDY
JOURNAL ARTICLE
RANDOMIZED CONTROLLED TRIAL

[Comparative study on Chinese medicine and western medicine for treatment of osteoarthritis of the knee in Caucasian patients]

Xin-Yan Qin, Xiao-Xia Li, Florian Berghea, Stefan Suteanu
Zhongguo Zhen Jiu, Chinese Acupuncture & Moxibustion 2008, 28 (6): 459-62
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OBJECTIVE: To compare the efficacy, safety and tolerability of different therapies in Caucasian patients with osteoarthritis (QA) of the knee.

METHODS: Seventy-five cases (90 knee joints) of osteoarthritis were randomly divided into 3 groups, western medicine group, traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) group, integrated Chinese and western medicine group. The western medicine group were treated with oral administration of Glucosamine Sulfate, oral administration and external application of non-steroid anti-inflammatory agent, ultrasound physiotherapy, etc. The TCM group were treated with oral administration of J uanbi Decoction, acupuncture and moxibustion, cupping, massage of acupoint and ear acupuncture. The integrated Chinese and western medicine group were treated with oral administration of Glucosamine Sulfate, oral administration and external application of non-steroid anti-inflammatory agent, acupuncture and moxibustion, cupping, massage of acupoint and ear acupuncture. The intensity of knee joint pain on walking, resting and standing, the nocturnal pain, stiffness, the maximum walking distance and the daily living ability were monitored after 30 days, 60 days and 90 days of treatment.

RESULTS: After 90 days of treatment, the integrated Chinese and western medicine group was better than other two groups in improvement of percentages in self pain assessment with visual analog scale (VAS), pain and stiffness measured by WOMAC scale, pain and maximum walking distance measured by Lequesne scale (P < 0.05 or P < 0.01). There were no significant differences in the therapeutic effects between the TCM group and the western medicine group. All of these three treatments were well tolerated, and no severe adverse events were found.

CONCLUSION: Combined TCM and western medicine treatment has rapid and definite therapeutic effect in reducing pain and improving mobility of knee joints and daily living ability in Caucasian patients of knee osteoarthritis.

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