The C.A.M. Report
Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Fair, Balanced, and to the Point
  • About this web log

    This blog ran from 2006 to 2016 and was intended as an objective and dispassionate source of information on the latest CAM research. Since my background is in pharmacy and allopathic medicine, I view all CAM as advancing through the development pipeline to eventually become integrated into mainstream medical practice. Some will succeed while others fail. But all are treated fairly here.

  • About the author

    John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.

  • Common sense considerations

    The material on this weblog is for informational purposes. It is not medical advice or counsel. Be smart, consult your health professional before using CAM.

  • Recent Posts

  • Recent Comments

    Qigong therapy for osteoarthritis of the knee

    The benefit depends on the therapist, according to this study from the UMDNJ-Robert Wood Johnson Medical School in Piscataway, New Jersey.

    First, the details.

    • 112 adults with knee osteoarthritis were randomly assigned to external qigong therapy or sham treatment (control).
    • 2 therapists performed external qigong therapy individually for 5 to 6 sessions in 3 weeks.
    • The results achieved by the 2 healers were analyzed separately.
    • A sham healer mimicked external qigong therapy for the same number of sessions and duration.
    • Patients and examining physician were unaware of the treatment given — double-blinded.

    And, the results.

    • Both qigong therapy groups reported a significant reduction in pain and improved function based on the Western Ontario MacMaster (WOMAC) scores.
    • Patients treated by healer 2 reported a significantly greater reduction in pain and more improvement in functionality than those in sham qigong therapy (control) group.
    • They also had a reduction in negative mood but not in anxiety or depression.
    • Patients treated by healer 1 experienced improvement similar to the sham control group.
    • The results of therapy persisted for 3 months in all groups.

    The bottom line?
    Movement benefits people with osteoarthritis of the knee. But getting the most from qigong depends — to a significant degree — on finding the best therapist.

    8/27/08 09:29 JR

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