vitamins, alternative medicine, antioxidants

Vitamin Stuff Blog

A Health, Nutrition, and Alternative Medicine Blog

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Placebo Effect: Magnetic Bracelet Therapy

Written by Tena Moore

If you or a loved one has arthritis you’ve probably heard about the magic of magnetic wrists straps and copper bracelets to relieve joint pain associated with arthritis (see: "Does Acupuncture help Arthritis? "). The bracelets can range in price from cheap to expensive, and most claim that they are effective for pain associated with stiff joints, especially during cold or wintery weather. To test out this theory scientists from the University of York, led by Stewart Richmond, put together a controlled trial composed of 45 patients.

Surprisingly, since the bracelets are so popular, this study was the only study using treatment and placebos conducted on the bracelets since the 1970s. What were the results of the trial? The researchers concluded that the bracelets do not provide any relief whatsoever. If any relief is experienced, researchers say it is only due to a placebo effect.

According to research, the bracelets are of no true value and showed no relief from joint pain at all. Each of the 45 patients was tested using two magnetic strips, a copper bracelet, and a placebo bracelet over a sixteen-week period. All participants were age 50 and older and all were diagnosed with osteoarthritis. Neither the copper bracelet, nor the two different magnetic wrist straps, showed any difference in effectiveness from the placebo bracelet that contained no copper or magnetic properties. The study was reported in the alternative medicine publication Complementary Therapies in Medicine.

Today more than ever, patients of all types are looking for complementary and alternative healing methods for treatment of all diseases and disorders. While many complementary and alternative treatments are in fact helpful for the patient, not all treatments hold the same effectiveness. For this reason, scientists and doctors are hoping that people will consider clinical tests and trials when deciding which treatments to test out. Although the bracelets are harmless if worn, the cost of the bracelet can be avoided and more effective treatments can be chosen.

Other Posts

  • The benefits of green leafy vegetables
  • Juicing: Drink Your Way To Better Health
  • Whole Foods stay as close to the natural food source as possible
  • Melatonin may help treat a variety of sleep disorders
  • The Truth About Fats: Healthy Fats and Harmful Fats
  • As a phytoestrogen, genistein mimics the effects of estrogen in the body


  • Return to VitaminStuff Homepage:



    Post a Comment

    << Home

    The Vitamin Stuff Health Nutrition Dictionary

    Disclaimer: The information provided here is for informational purposes and is not medical advice. Individuals wishing to use supplements or alternative medicine therapies should consult with their doctor beforehand.

    Copyright © 2005