Individuals with rheumatic disorders, particularly those with more severe, chronic conditions, are likely to be frequent users of complementary and alternative medical therapies. Although large-scale clinical trials have yet to be conducted, there is moderately strong evidence that acupuncture may be effective for treating both osteoarthritis and fibromyalgia. The utility of acupuncture in treating rheumatoid arthritis has not been demonstrated in large, randomized controlled trials. Physicians who treat patients with rheumatic conditions should become knowledgeable about the literature on both the effectiveness of acupuncture for these conditions as well as its potential to cause adverse side effects in particular patient groups.
Berman BM, Swyers JP, Ezzo J