The type of magnets evaluated in this review are electromagnetic fields (generated by electricity) and not static magnetic fields as Q magnets are defined.
The Cochrane Collaboration published an important review in October 2013 called “Electromagnetic fields for treating osteoarthritis (Review)”.
For those that are interested, the review can be downloaded here.
It considers nine studies investigating Pulsed Electromagnetic Field therapy (PEMF), which are magnetic fields generated through electrical wires with pulsed electricity. So while it’s not technically the same as static magnetic field therapy, it will hopefully silence the many critics of magnetic field therapy who still ignorantly claim magnetic fields have no effect on the human body.
The author’s conclusion was as follows…
“Current evidence suggests that electromagnetic field treatment may provide moderate benefit for osteoarthritis sufferers in terms of pain relief. Further studies are required to confirm whether this treatment confers clinically important benefits in terms of physical function and quality of life. Our conclusions are unchanged from the previous review conducted in 2002.”
The above conclusion is all the more significant considering that the evidence required by the Cochrane Review to support a therapy is quite onerous. For instance, Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) is used widely in hospitals and pain clinics around the world, yet two recent Cochrane Reviews concluded that the evidence does not support its use. See references below…
- Khadikar et al (2008). Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) versus placebo for chronic low-back pain. PMID: 18843638
- Dowswell et al (2009). Transcutaneous electrical nerve stimulation (TENS) for pain relief in labour. PMID: 19370680
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