Glucosamine-chondroitin shown protective for 6 years in patients with knee OA

Cartilage volume loss was reduced in patients with knee osteoarthritis who supplemented with glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate, and retention of cartilage was related to exposure time to treatment during a period of 6 years, according to the results of a study.

by Shirley Pulawski, Healio Rheumatology February 17, 2016.

A group of 429 patients with osteoarthritis (OA) were selected from the OA Initiative database. Patients had 6 years of follow-up data, complete information on the use of glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate, and radiographic and MRI scans at baseline and at 6 years for the most symptomatic knee. Patients were stratified into the following four groups: patients unexposed to supplementation with glucosamine or chondroitin sulfate (n = 183); patients who used the supplement for 1 year (n = 96), patients who used the supplement for 2 years to 3 years (n = 38), and patients exposed to the supplement for 4 years to 6 years (n = 112).

A trend toward an increase in cartilage was observed for the global knee associated with the lateral compartment in patients who supplemented with glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate. The effect was not observed in the medial compartment or its subregions, and no evidence of a glucosamine/chondroitin sulfate impact was observed on radiographic investigation.

Significantly less cartilage volume loss was observed in the lateral compartment of patients exposed to glucosamine and chondroitin sulfate for 2 years or more, and a protective effect in the global knee was observed. No impact on symptom improvement using WOMAC scores was observed in any group.

Source Healio Rheumatology

Long-term effects of glucosamine/chondroitin sulfate on the progression of structural changes in knee osteoarthritis: 6-year follow-up data from the osteoarthritis initiative, Jean-Pierre Raynauld MD, Jean-Pierre Pelletier MD, François Abram PhD, Philippe Delorme MSc and Johanne Martel-Pelletier PhD, Arthritis Care & Research. DOI: 10.1002/acr.22866

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