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Glucosamine, a compound derived from shellfish, is a building block in cartilage and hyaluronic acid, the fluid in joints, which is decreased in osteoarthritis . It has been shown to provide pain relief, reduce tenderness, preserve joints and improve mobility in patients with osteoarthritis. In  studies glucosamine has been shown to be as or more effective than ibuprofen in the treatment of osteoarthritis of the knees and in TMJ with a better safety profile than anti-inflamatorie agents.  An eight-week trial of 1500 mg of glucosamine is recommended. There is conflicting evidence that chondroitin may be of benefit as well.


Da Camara CC et al.. Glucosamine sulfate for osteoarthritis. Ann Pharmacother 1998 May;32(5):580-7.

Bassleer C et al. Stimulation of proteoglycan production by glucosamine sulfate in chondrocytes isolated from human osteoarthritic articular cartilege in vitro. Osteoarthritis Cartilage 1998 Nov;6(6):427-34.

Deal CL et al. Nutraceuticals as therapeutic agents in osteoarthritis. The role of glucosamine, chondroitin sulfate, and collagen hydrolysate. Rheam Dis Clin North Am 1999 May;25(2):379-95.

Leffler CT et al. Glucosamine, chondroitin, and manganese ascorbate for degenerative joint disease of the knee or low back: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled pilot study. Mil Med 1999 Feb;164(2):85-91.

Major, PW et al. Glucosamine vs Ibuprofeen in the Treatment of TMJ. J Rheumatol 2001; 28:1347-1355.

Glucosamine sulfate. Alter Med Rev 1999 Jun;4(3):19305.

Houpt JB et al. Effect of glucosamine hydrochloride in the treatment of pain of osteoarthritis of the knee. J Rheumatol 1999 Nov;26(11):2423-30.

Delafuente JC. Glucosamine in the treatment of osteoarthritis. Rheum Dis Clin North Am 2000 Feb;26(1):1-11.

McAlindon TE et al. Glucosamine and chondroitin for treatment of osteoarthritis: a systematic quality assessment and meta-analysis. JAMA 2000 Mar 15;283(11):1469-75.

McCarty MF et al. Sulfates glycosaminoglycans and glucosamine may synergize in promoting synovial hyaluronic acid synthesis. Med Hypotheses 2000 May;54(5):798-802.

Reginster, JY et al. Long-term effects of glucosamine sulphate on osteoarthritis progression: a radnomised, placebo-controlled clinical trial. Lancet 2001 January 27;357:251-256.




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Last modified: June 04, 2005