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Sunday, February 17, 2008

Treatment for Knee Osteoarthritis May Not be Effective

The most common type of osteoarthritis in the United States is Knee Osteoarthritis. It is the main cause of disability in the U.S., with more than 10 million people reported as having it. The most common supplements for knee osteoarthritis are chondroitin and glucosamine, the most common surgery is arthroscopic knee surgery and the most common injections are hyaluronan (as in hyalauronic acid) preparations.

However, according to a review by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), none of these treatments are more effective than a placebo. The review stated that each of these treatments lacked scientific support and needed more testing.

If the supplements that are used to relieve pain and improve physical function have no effect and the injections used to lubricate the joint lack scientific support, as well as the procedure to clean out the joint by removing loose cartilage, then the entire medical community will need to determine new, effective treatments for the leading cause of osteoarthritis.

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