Clinical Crossroads | Clinician's Corner

A 60-Year-Old Woman Considering Acupuncture for Knee Pain

Brian Berman, MD, Discussant
JAMA. 2007;297(15):1697-1707. doi:10.1001/jama.297.15.1697.
Text Size: A A A
Published online

Mrs A, an active 60-year-old woman, has a history of degenerative osteoarthritis of her knee with pain that has progressed over the past 8 years. She has undergone arthroscopic surgery for a meniscal tear and has taken nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), glucosamine, and chondroitin sulfate occasionally, but generally does not like taking medications. She is open to other therapeutic approaches and wants to know if acupuncture can help the pain, improve function, and stop her condition from progressing. The evidence for the effectiveness of acupuncture for knee pain and other common treatments, including exercise, NSAIDs, glucosamine and chondroitin, and intra-articular knee injections are compared, and costs and methods of acupuncture and selecting an acupuncturist are discussed.

Figures in this Article

Sign In to Access Full Content

Don't have Access?

Register and get free email Table of Contents alerts, saved searches, PowerPoint downloads, CME quizzes, and more

Subscribe for full-text access to content from 1998 forward and a host of useful features

Activate your current subscription (AMA members and current subscribers)

Purchase Online Access to this article for 24 hours


Figure 1. Radiograph of Mrs A’s Knee
Graphic Jump Location

White arrowheads indicate location of osteophytes.

Figure 2. Common Acupuncture Points for Treatment of Knee Pain
Graphic Jump Location

The acupuncture points in this figure represent some of the primary points used in traditional Chinese medicine to treat the main subcategories of “Bi” syndrome—the closest traditional Chinese medicine diagnosis for arthritis. These points were used in standardized treatment protocols in 2 of the large randomized controlled trials in Table 2.49,50 The other randomized controlled trials51,52 listed in Table 2 used a variety of standardized and individualized treatment protocols that included a minimum of 8 points, including some of those indicated. BL indicates bladder meridian; GB, gallbladder meridian; KI, kidney meridian; SP, spleen meridian; ST, stomach meridian. For additional information on accupuncture points, see Cheng X, ed. Chinese Acupuncture and Moxibustion. Beijing, China: Foreign Languages Press; 1987.




You need to register in order to view this quiz.
Citing articles are presented as examples only. In non-demo SCM6 implementation, integration with CrossRef’s "Cited By" API will populate this tab (http://www.crossref.org/citedby.html).
Submit a Response


Some tools below are only available to our subscribers or users with an online account.

Web of Science® Times Cited: 10

Sign In to Access Full Content

Related Content

Customize your page view by dragging & repositioning the boxes below.

Articles Related By Topic
Related Topics
PubMed Articles