Glucosamine Trial Results Presented
At the American College of Rheumatology Annual Scientific Meeting (2005), results from two glucosamine trials were presented.
- GAIT (Glucosamine/Chondroitin Arthritis Intervention Trial) was funded by the National Institutes of Health and designed to determine safety and efficacy with glucosamine, chondroitin, taken separately or together.
- GUIDE (Glucosamine Unum In Die Efficacy) was a European clinical trial.
GAIT (Glucosamine/Chondroitin Arthritis Intervention Trial)
In GAIT (Glucosamine/Chondroitin Arthritis Intervention Trial), nearly 1,600 patients with painful knee osteoarthritis were recruited from 16 U.S. academic rheumatology centers for the study. Study patients had experienced significant knee pain and had x-ray evidence of knee osteoarthritis. During the GAIT study, the patients:
- Were evaluated at beginning of the study.
- Were evaluated at weeks 4, 8, 16, 24.
- Patients were randomized to receive glucosamine HCl, sodium chondroitin sulfate, both supplements, celecoxib, or placebo.
- Patients were allowed up to 4,000 mg daily of acetaminophen.
Results from GAIT (Glucosamine / Chondroitin Arthritis Intervention Trial)
- Results revealed that the combination of glucosamine and chondroitin is better than placebo but the benefits seem to depend on severity of pain.
- In patients with moderate-to-severe osteoarthritis knee pain, 79.2% taking glucosamine/chondroitin combination experienced pain relief.
- For patients taking celecoxib, 69.4% experienced pain relief. (65.7% experienced relief taking glucosamine alone and 61.4 % taking chondroitin alone. 54.3% taking placebo reported pain relief.
- In patients with mild knee osteoarthritis pain, the glucosamine chondroitin combination was not significantly more effective than placebo.
GUIDE (Glucosamine Unum In Die Efficacy)
There were 318 patients in the GUIDE study with knee osteoarthritis (88 percent women). Patients were randomized to take either oral glucosamine sulfate soluble powder (1500 mg once a day), acetaminophen (1000 mg three times a day), or placebo over a 6-month period. All groups were allowed to take ibuprofen as needed.
Results from GUIDE (Glucosamine Unum In Die Efficacy) revealed:
- Both glucosamine sulfate and acetaminophen were more effective in reducing pain than placebo.
- Patients taking glucosamine sulfate exhibited more relief than patients on acetaminophen.
- It was concluded that once-daily 1500 mg oral doses of glucosamine sulfate may be the preferred treatment for knee osteoarthritis.
Arthritis Foundation Recommendation's For Glucosamine
- Before trying glucosamine/chondroitin discuss it with your doctor and ask how it would fit in with your current treatment program.
- Stay on your prescribed medications. Supplements are not replacements for your prescribed medications.
- Learn and do your own research. Find sources of information which are reliable.
- Follow directions specified by the supplement manufacturer or ask your doctor about proper dosage.
- Avoid combining various other supplements.
- Buy from a reputable manufacturer. Know what you are getting.
Sources: Arthritis Foundation and American College of Rheumatology