A Systematic Review of Complementary Therapy for Treating Osteoarthritis

Ira Purnamasari, Suharyono Suharyono, Suhendra Agung Wibowo

= http://dx.doi.org/10.20473/jn.v15i2.19025
Abstract views = 210 times | downloads = 231 times


Introduction: Osteoarthritis (OA) is a chronic progressive disease that is often experienced by the elderly resulting in pain and joint stiffness which then causes movement or mobility disorders. Complementary therapy eases osteoarthritis with a traditional technique known as non-pharmacological treatment. The aim of this systematic review is to identify the effectiveness of several complementary therapies as osteoarthritis management.

Methods: The review was performed according to PRISMA guidelines. We searched from PubMed, Scopus, ProQuest, and ScienceDirect databases. The search identified 14 relevant journals from the 19,123 articles published between 2016 and 2020, and all studies used the Randomized Control Trial (RCT).

Results: Complementary therapies consisted of flaxseed poultice compress, acupressure, acupuncture therapy, cumin black oil compress, aromatherapy massage, ginger oil massage, lavender oil massage, sensorimotor exercise, application of heat, exercises with elastic bands, ultrasound therapy, geotherapy combination kinesiotherapy, phonophoresis therapy, and stimulation of compression.

Conclusion: The effectiveness of these therapies can be seen from the different results of osteoarthritis patients who received the intervention and the control group. The decrease in the total index WOMAC and Lequesne, VAS and increase in the physical function of patients with osteoarthritis who received the complementary therapy are significantly higher than the control group. It proved that the complementary therapy has positive impact as management of osteoarthritis pain. The effects of complementary therapy have an influence on pain, joint stiffness, and physical function limitations in osteoarthritis patients.


complementary therapy; osteoarthritis pain

Full Text:



Ahmed, A. F. (2011). Effect of sensorimotor training on balance in elderly patients with knee osteoarthritis. Journal of Advanced Research, 2(4), 305–311. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jare.2011.02.001

Alfredo, P. P., Junior, W. S., & Casarotto, R. A. (2020). Efficacy of continuous and pulsed therapeutic ultrasound combined with exercises for knee osteoarthritis: a randomized controlled trial. Clinical Rehabilitation. https://doi.org/10.1177/0269215520903786

Alnahdi, A. H., Zeni, J. A., & Snyder-Mackler, L. (2012). Muscle Impairments in Patients With Knee Osteoarthritis. Sports Health, 4(4), 284–292. https://doi.org/10.1177/1941738112445726

Efe Arslan, D., Kutlutürkan, S., & Korkmaz, M. (2019). The Effect of Aromatherapy Massage on Knee Pain and Functional Status in Participants with Osteoarthritis. Pain Management Nursing, 20(1), 62–69. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.pmn.2017.12.001

Karadağ, S., Taşci, S., Doğan, N., Demir, H., & Kiliç, Z. (2019). Application of heat and a home exercise program for pain and function levels in patients with knee osteoarthritis: A randomized controlled trial. International Journal of Nursing Practice, 25(5), 1–9. https://doi.org/10.1111/ijn.12772

Marcon, F., Carolina, M., Barros, C., Cristina, K., Carvalho, D., Toral, I., … Vargas, D. O. (2019). Journal of Bodywork & Movement Therapies Geotherapy combined with kinesiotherapy is ef fi cient in reducing pain in patients with osteoarthritis. (xxxx).

Nasiri, A., & Mahmodi, M. A. (2018). Aromatherapy massage with lavender essential oil and the prevention of disability in ADL in patients with osteoarthritis of the knee: A randomized controlled clinical trial. Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice, 30, 116–121. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ctcp.2017.12.012

Pehlivan, S., & Karadakovan, A. (2019). Effects of aromatherapy massage on pain, functional state, and quality of life in an elderly individual with knee osteoarthritis. Japan Journal of Nursing Science, 16(4), 450–458. https://doi.org/10.1111/jjns.12254

Pinkaew, D., Kiattisin, K., Wonglangka, K., & Awoot, P. (2020). Phonophoresis of Phyllanthus amarus nanoparticle gel improves functional capacity in individuals with knee osteoarthritis: A randomized controlled trial. Journal of Bodywork and Movement Therapies, 24(1), 15–18. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jbmt.2019.04.013

Savaş, B. B., Alparslan, G. B., & Korkmaz, C. (2019). Effect of flaxseed poultice compress application on pain and hand functions of patients with hand osteoarthritis. Clinical Rheumatology, 38(7), 1961–1969. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10067-019-04484-7

Sim, J. O. (2016). Effects of resistance exercise using elastic band on range of motion, function and shoulder pain among patients with rotator cuff repair. Korean Journal of Adult Nursing, 28(5), 491–500. https://doi.org/10.7475/kjan.2016.28.5.491

Tanaka, R., Umehara, T., Kawabata, Y., & Sakuda, T. (2018). Effect of Continuous Compression Stimulation on Pressure-Pain Threshold and Muscle Spasms in Older Adults With Knee Osteoarthritis: A Randomized Trial. Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics, 41(4), 315–322. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jmpt.2017.09.011

Tosun, B., Unal, N., Yigit, D., Can, N., Aslan, O., & Tunay, S. (2017). Effects of self-knee massage with Ginger Oil in patients with Osteoarthritis: An experimental study. Research and Theory for Nursing Practice, 31(4), 379–392. https://doi.org/10.1891/1541-6577.31.4.379

Tuna, H. I., Babadag, B., Ozkaraman, A., & Balci Alparslan, G. (2018). Investigation of the effect of black cumin oil on pain in osteoarthritis geriatric individuals. Complementary Therapies in Clinical Practice, 31(June 2017), 290–294. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.ctcp.2018.03.013


  • There are currently no refbacks.

Copyright (c) 2020 Jurnal Ners

Creative Commons License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

This journal is indexed by:





This journal is published by:


          Faculty of Nursing Universitas Airlangga in Collaboration with Indonesian National Nurses Association


Creative Commons License

This journal (p-ISSN:1858-3598; e-ISSN:2502-5791) is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License


Current Stats

Previous Stats