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Evid Based Complement Alternat Med. 2012;2012:171706. doi: 10.1155/2012/171706. Epub 2012 Feb 12.

Traditional chinese herbal patch for short-term management of knee osteoarthritis: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial.

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Shi's Center of Orthopedics and Traumatology, Shuguang Hospital, Shanghai University of Traditional Chinese Medicine, 528 Zhangheng Road, Pudong New Area, Shanghai 201203, China.


Objective. To assess the short-term efficacy and safety of two kinds of Traditional Chinese herbal patches, Fufang Nanxing Zhitong Gao (FNZG) and Shangshi Jietong Gao (SJG), for painful knee osteoarthritis (OA). Methods. Patients were randomly enrolled in a double-blind, placebo-controlled study to receive FNZG (n = 60), SJG (n = 60), or placebo patch (n = 30) for 7 days. Outcome measures included visual analogue scale (VAS), Western Ontario and McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis Index (WOMAC), and Traditional Chinese Medicine Syndrome Questionnaire (TCMSQ) subscale. Results. Although there was no significant difference among, three groups in short-term pain management, patients receiving FNZG got significant improvement in symptom of fear of coldness as compared with placebo patch (P = 0.029). The most common local adverse events of rash, itching, erythema, and slightly damaged skin were observed in 7% of participants. Conclusions. FNZG may be a useful treatment for symptom of knee OA and merits long-term study in broader populations.

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