Faculty Sponsor

Jana Stedman




Master of Science in Physician Assistant Studies (MSPA)

ORCID Identifier(s)


Presentation Type

Poster Presentation

Symposium Date

Summer 7-26-2023


Objective: As knee osteoarthritis (KOA) is a very common, progressive, irreversible, and painful disease that affects many as they age, treatment modalities to alleviate symptoms are important to explore. This work aims to gather evidence as to the efficacy of a minimum of 4 weeks of acupuncture for the treatment of patients with knee pain secondary to osteoarthritis.

Methods: Google Scholar and Valpo Library Databases were perused with a variety of search phrases to yield potential sources. The date of publication was set to be within the last 5 years. Studies needed to include trials of traditional/ conventional acupuncture. Treatment outcome measures varied between studies but most relied on pain scores and joint functioning protocols. No age, gender or racial exclusions were made.

Results: Most studies indicate consensus that acupuncture therapy is beneficial for KOA when done for periods of longer than 4 weeks, however many are concerned with limitations in existing studies regarding variability between execution of trials and quality of reporting.

Conclusion: Further research is needed to confirm acupuncture benefits and to determine the optimal frequency, duration, and mode of acupuncture treatment for KOA so that providers can recommend it as a truly effective treatment option for patients.

Keywords: knee osteoarthritis, joint, traditional Chinese medicine, acupuncture, pain, needle

Biographical Information about Author(s)

Idalia Zachara plans to complete Butler’s Doctorate of Medical Science program following graduation. She hopes to work in a surgically oriented field. She has been a student member of the American Academy of Physician Associates (AAPA) and was the Student Academy Representative for the Indianapolis conference in 2022, and also served on the executive board for the Valparaiso University Physician Assistant Student Society (VUPASS).

She will be presenting on “Acupuncture Treatment in the Reduction of Knee Pain Due to Osteoarthritis” because she has a special interest in orthopedics and alternative or holistic medicine.