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Forum Name: Degenerative Bone Diseases

Question: Supplements for osteoarthritis?


 outback_jack - Tue Nov 17, 2009 1:16 am

Hi,

About a year ago I started suffering continuous chronic pain around the left groin area, X-rays indeed eventually confirmed the onset of osteoarthritis of the left hip (I was only 37).

Been trying to combat this thing agressively, heat-pads/creams/pain-killers have been controlling the pain, but unfortunately they're not doing anything about the underlying disease. The pain seems to wax and wan over a cycle of weeks, my condition seems stable at the moment - after 1 year its still relatively mild- but there's still a gradual detoriation going on.

I investigated supplements, but the studies on glucosamine chondroitin are disapponing and unconvincing, I don't think the supplement is of any use.

I eventually opted for the same supplements that would be used for osteoporosis - the follwing supplement combo:

Calcium, Vitamin D, Magnesium and Boron.

Boron is particularly intriguing, studies show a strong correlation between soil levels of Boron and incidence of oseto-arthritis. Unfortunately, there is not yet clear evidence for this supplement combo either - I wondered what the medical opinion on this supplement combo is?

A recent study has found that a known drug for osteoporosis (PTH - Parathyroid hormone) could stop and actually reverse cartilage loss in osteoarthritis. If confirmed this would be a huge breakthrough, it would be first ever drug shown to definitely stop and reverse cartilage loss. Any opinions of this? Link to news report below:

osteoarthritis.aspx" class="postlink">http://www.news-medical.net/news/20090914/PTH-therapy-could-prevent-osteoarthritis.aspx


Note that the 4 supplements I mentioned (Calcium, Vitamin D, Magnesium and Boron) are known to be intimately connected to PTH levels, which is (weak) evidence that they could be effective against osteo-arthritis.
 Dr.M.Aroon kamath - Thu Dec 10, 2009 2:49 am

User avatar Hi,
Osteoarthritis(OA) is not an exclusive disorder of articular cartilage of joints. Almost all components of an involved joint are adversely affected by OA (including
the peri-articular bone, synovial lining, adjacent connective tissue elements and muscles).

The pathogenesis of osteoarthritis is not well understood (as is the disease progression and origin of pain).

Hereditary / mechanical factors and the effects of ageing seem to be the central underlying factors.Role of cytokines is still being elucidated.

Apart from these, other factors have been shown to affect the progression of OA, including obesity, associated intra-articular crystal deposition,the presence of polyarticular disease,joint instability / malalignment, peripheral neuropathy and muscle weakness.

At present there is no single, proven effective treatment which takes care of the onset, progression and pain of OA.
The supplements you mention are extensively talked about but remain largely of unproven benefit.

The link you have provided is an isolated study and is surely 'interesting'. More studies may be needed to corraborate these observations.
Best wishes!

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