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Effect of Electroacupuncture versus Sham Electroacupuncture in Patients with Knee Osteoarthritis: A Pilot Randomized Controlled Trial.


ABSTRACT: Objective:To explore the feasibility of evaluating the effectiveness and safety of electroacupuncture versus sham electroacupuncture for patients with knee osteoarthritis (KOA). Method:A pilot randomized controlled trial was conducted at a teaching hospital in Beijing. A total of 30 patients with KOA (Kellgren grade II or III) were randomly allocated to an eight-week treatment of either electroacupuncture or sham electroacupuncture. Patients and outcome assessors were blinded to group allocation. The primary outcome was the proportion of responders achieving at least 1.14 seconds decrease in the Timed Up and Go Test (TUG) at week eight compared with baseline. The secondary outcomes included the knee range of motion, the knee extensor and flexor muscle strength, Lequesne index, 9-step stair-climb test (9-SCT), and TUG. Results:Of 30 patients allocated to two groups, 27 (90%) completed the study. The proportion of responders was 53.3% (8 of 15) for electroacupuncture group and 26.7% (4 of 15) for sham electroacupuncture group by the intention-to-treat analysis (P = 0.264). There was no statistically significant difference in TUG between the two groups at eight weeks (P = 0.856). The compliance rate measured according to patients who conformed to the protocol and had received treatments ?20 times was 93.3% (28 of 30). The dropout rate was 20% (3 of 15). Adverse effects were not reported in the study. Conclusion:Our research demonstrated that further evaluation of the effectiveness of electroacupuncture versus sham electroacupuncture was feasible and safe for patients with KOA. Whether or not the electroacupuncture can improve the physical functions of knee joint, expand the knee range of motion, and increase the extensor and flexor muscle strength more significantly than sham electroacupuncture, future studies can be designed with larger sample size, randomization design and less biases. This trial is registered with NCT03366363.

SUBMITTER: Wang Q 

PROVIDER: S-EPMC7414333 | BioStudies | 2020-01-01

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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