Biofield Therapy for Knee Osteoarthritis Pain

Biofield Therapy for Knee Osteoarthritis Pain


  • Confirmatory replication of a randomized controlled trial to evaluate the clinical efficacy of biofield therapy (reiki) for chronic pain, with further investigation into mechanism.


  • The experience of pain can be modulated by the consciousness-mediated therapeutic modality of reiki; Biofield therapy will decrease chronic knee osteoarthritic pain and functional interference relative to placebo control and waitlist control groups
  • As knee osteoarthritis pain and functional interference decrease, depression, anxiety, pain catastrophizing, and substance use will also decrease while sleep and quality of life will improve
  • Reiki as a biofield therapy will be confirmed as feasible/acceptable within the knee osteoarthritis cohort
  • Biofield therapy, a transpersonal modality, will be validated to have similar therapeutic mechanism to other consciousness-mediated therapeutic modalities like personal mindfulness meditation. We expect to see reiki facilitate central nervous system pain-modulatory processes, increase brain frontal midline theta activity, modulate the brain’s default mode network activity, increase parasympathetic activity, and increase the distribution of pleasant bodily sensations through EEG, HRV, fNIRS, and quantitative sensory testing


  • 165 men and women over 60 years of age with pre-operative knee osteoarthritis in a blinded, four arm randomized, placebo-controlled clinical trial

Projected Outcomes (In Process)

  • The first rigorously designed hybrid efficacy/mechanistic trial of a biofield therapy for knee osteoarthritic pain, on the path to a first widespread practical health application for biofield therapy
  • Conduct the first large scale randomized controlled trial comparing biofield therapy with mindfulness meditation, another well accepted consciousness-mediated modality, to compare mechanism
  • Comprehensively characterize participant mediators and mechanisms during a biofield therapy session by tracking bodily sensations and psychophysiological markers of self-transcendence which indicate a sense of dissolution of the self and an increase in oneness