Date of Award


Degree Type

Selective Evidence-Based Medicine Review

Degree Name

Master of Science in Health Sciences - Physician Assistant


Physician Assistant Studies

Department Chair

John Cavenagh, MBA, PhD, PA-C


Objective: The objective of this evidence based medicine review is to determine whether ginger is effective in reducing knee pain in adults with osteoarthritis.

Study Design: Three double blind, randomized controlled trials were reviewed and selected based on their relevance to the clinical question and their inclusion of patient oriented outcomes (POEMS).

Data Sources: Each study was obtained by searching Cochrane and PubMed database.

Outcomes Measured: The outcomes were measured using the Western Ontario and McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis index (WOMAC) via Likert scale and Knee Pain rated via Knee injury and knee Osteoarthritis Outcome score (KOOS) questionnaire which is a knee specific instrument and is an extension of the WOMAC.

Results: The results of Chopra et al. study showed that the Ayurvedic formulations specifically SGCG, significantly reduced knee pain and were equivalent to glucosamine, with a score of -0.050 to 1.32 utilizing intent-to-treat analysis (ITT) with 95 % confidence interval (CI). The WOMAC pain score mean decreased of 24.22% and 29.15% at the end of the trial respectively utilizing ANOVA with P = 0.144. The Nieman et al. study showed the WOMAC pain score mean was significantly reduced in the Instaflex group compared to placebo group with a 37% decrease versus a16% decrease, respectively utilizing ANOVA with P = 0.0255. The Niempoog et al. study show no statistical significance in the KOOS pain score mean between with the experimental group as compared to the placebo group, utilizing ANOVA with P > 0.056.

Conclusions: Although there was conflicting evidence in the current literature, two out of the three RCTs demonstrated positive outcomes with ginger or ginger containing capsules in the treatment of osteoarthritis knee pain.