Reported January 29, 2003

Supplement may Help Knee Pain

CRAWLEY, Australia (Ivanhoe Newswire) -- Researchers in Australia found glucosamine supplements may provide some degree of pain relief and improved function in people who experience regular knee pain.

Researchers from the University of Western Australia divided participants into two groups. One group received 2,000 milligrams of glucosamine each day for 12 weeks while the second group received the same regimen of a placebo.

Results of the study show the glucosamine group reported having better quality of life and less knee pain after eight weeks than the placebo group. About 88 percent of the glucosamine group reported some degree of improvement in their knee pain compared to 17 percent in the placebo group.

Previous studies found some perceived benefit of glucosamine use, but the results have been somewhat controversial.

Glucosamine is a natural substance produced by the body and found primarily in joint cartilage, where it is thought to play an important role in maintaining joint health and resilience. Glucosamine supplements are widely sold in health food stores and over the Internet.

Knee pain is often age related. Knee pain in people over age 40 is most likely the result of wear and tear on the joints, which can be early osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis is the most common cause of knee pain in the United States.Â* In younger people, it is commonly caused by a sports-related injury or physical activity.