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Magnetic bangles DO help arthritis

By Lorraine Fisher Daily Mirror (17.12.04)

 

MAGNETIC bracelets worn by sufferers of osteoarthritis to reduce joint pain DO work, experts said yesterday.

Doctors have long derided the benefits of the bracelets, which many patients insist give some relief, calling it a figment of the imagination.

But a new study of the common joint condition says it has "clinical" proof sufferers feel less pain and discomfort while wearing the bracelets.

In a study of 194 men and women, aged 45 to 80, those given non-magnetic, or low magnetic bracelets felt little change in their condition.

But those given standard magnetic bracelets to wear around troublesome hip or knee joints felt a significant reduction in pain.

No one in the 12-week study group was aware which type of bracelet they were wearing.

The researchers from the Peninsula Medical School, in Plymouth, concluded: "Pain from osteoarthritis of the hip and knee decreases when wearing magnetic bracelets.

"But we cannot be certain our data shows a specific effect of magnets, a placebo effect or both."

They added the benefit of magnetic bracelets, sold for 30 to 50, was clinically useful, but they were not a substitute for existing treatments.

About 760,000 people in the UK suffer from osteoarthritis with three million GP visits a year.

The Arthritis Research Campaign said: "We wanted to establish if there was any evidence and didn't want the public wasting their money.

"Results appear to show wearing a magnetic bracelet does reduce pain in hips and knees."


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