By Dr. John Briffa
One common secondary issue relates to the joints. For example, I may see individuals who have a tendency to pain and stiffness in one or more joints, generally as a result of wear and tear, also known as osteoarthritis. Many of these individuals have sustained sporting injuries, after which they may find the joint never was “quite right.”
Of all the joints to be affected in this way, I find the knee to be the most common. Not only is this one of the major weight-bearing joints in the body, but also it is prone to injury during the twisting and turning and abnormal forces induced by, say, skiing, rugby, football, squash, or tennis.
While not all research is utterly consistent, there is evidence that supplementation with glucosamine sulphate can be effective in the relief of osteoarthritis, including that affecting the knee. In practice, I find glucosamine to be generally very effective in improving the function of the knee joint and reducing discomfort. It can be a critical factor in allowing individuals to retain active, productive lives…
…In this study, 275 individuals were followed through time. For the purposes of the analysis, individuals were divided into two groups: those who in previous studies had taken glucosamine sulphate for at least one year and up to three years, and those who in previous studies had taken a placebo. ..
Those who had previously taken glucosamine were 57 percent less likely to have knee replacement compared to those who had taken a placebo. Those who had previously taken glucosamine used less medication and health resources generally compared to those who had taken a placebo.
This study supports the use of glucosamine sulphate for the treatment of wear and tear and osteoarthritis of the knee. In particular, this agent seems to help keep people off the operating table.