Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

TENS For Osteoarthritis: Not Enough Evidence To Recommend

Date:
October 6, 2009
Source:
Wiley-Blackwell
Summary:
Despite twenty years of research on the use of electrostimulation techniques (TENS) for treatment of osteoarthritis in the knee, researchers still cannot say whether it reduces pain or physical disability. This is the conclusion of a new review of electrostimulation trials in osteoarthritis.

Despite twenty years of research on the use of electrostimulation techniques (TENS) for treatment of osteoarthritis in the knee, researchers still cannot say whether it reduces pain or physical disability. This is the conclusion of a Cochrane Systematic Review of electrostimulation trials in osteoarthritis.

Osteoarthritis is the most common cause of pain and physical disability in older people. In one widely used form of treatment for the disease, called transcutaneous electrical stimulation (TENS), an electrical current is applied to the skin at the joint to stimulate the nerves and try to relieve pain.

The authors reviewed data from 18 small trials that together included 813 patients. According to their findings for physical disability, 29 out of 100 people who received TENS treatment responded to treatment, compared to 26 out of 100 people who received fake TENS treatment or took their usual treatments. There was no difference in pain relief or in the number who dropped out due to adverse effects.

"Although some people who have electrostimulation treatment for osteoarthritis of the knee show some improvement, our data suggest that this may not be greater than the improvement experienced by those who receive placebo treatment," said lead researcher, Anne Rutjes of the Institute of Social and Preventive Medicine at the University of Bern in Switzerland. "After two decades of research on the use of these methods there is still no clear evidence that they work."

Data was only available for a few small trials and many of these were of very poor quality. In particular, most did not provide enough information about the number of drop outs and some failed to make any mention at all of adverse effects. "To clarify the effectiveness of TENS as a treatment for osteoarthritis we need larger, better quality trials," says Rutjes.

The work was funded by the Swiss National Science Foundation in Switzerland.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Wiley-Blackwell. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Rutjes AWS, Nόesch E, Sterchi R, Kalichman L, Hendriks E, Osiri M, Brosseau L, Reichenbach S, Jόni P. Transcutaneous electrostimulation for osteoarthritis of the knee. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, 2009, Issue 4. Art. No.: CD002823 DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD002823.pub2

Cite This Page:

Wiley-Blackwell. "TENS For Osteoarthritis: Not Enough Evidence To Recommend." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 6 October 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/10/091006191324.htm>.
Wiley-Blackwell. (2009, October 6). TENS For Osteoarthritis: Not Enough Evidence To Recommend. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 16, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/10/091006191324.htm
Wiley-Blackwell. "TENS For Osteoarthritis: Not Enough Evidence To Recommend." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/10/091006191324.htm (accessed April 16, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Ebola Outbreak Now Linked To 121 Deaths

Ebola Outbreak Now Linked To 121 Deaths

Newsy (Apr. 15, 2014) — The ebola virus outbreak in West Africa is now linked to 121 deaths. Health officials fear the virus will continue to spread in urban areas. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Cognitive Function: Is It All Downhill From Age 24?

Cognitive Function: Is It All Downhill From Age 24?

Newsy (Apr. 15, 2014) — A new study out of Canada says cognitive motor performance begins deteriorating around age 24. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
How Mt. Everest Helped Scientists Research Diabetes

How Mt. Everest Helped Scientists Research Diabetes

Newsy (Apr. 15, 2014) — British researchers were able to use Mount Everest's low altitudes to study insulin resistance. They hope to find ways to treat diabetes. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Carpenter's Injury Leads To Hundreds Of 3-D-Printed Hands

Carpenter's Injury Leads To Hundreds Of 3-D-Printed Hands

Newsy (Apr. 14, 2014) — Richard van As lost all fingers on his right hand in a woodworking accident. Now, he's used the incident to create a prosthetic to help hundreds. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins