What is the general opinion on Glucosamine chondroitan? Do we think it works? Studies have been negative to date, but my father swears by it.
Any experience with it?
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What is the general opinion on Glucosamine chondroitan? Do we think it works? Studies have been negative to date, but my father swears by it.
Any experience with it?
Comments are closed.
My friend gives it to her dog and swears it helps her dog’s joint problems. I’ve taken it myself and never found it to do much (or anything).
Is it for you or a dog? We gave it to our old dogs under the vet
s rec. and I believe it worked. For humans, like many meds, it depends on the individual. And it’s chondroitin. Costco sells dog biscuits with glucosamine chondroitin.
My friend and co-blogger Alex thinks this is a site for old people. I swear, I have no idea what he’s talking about.
We give it to one of our elderly rabbits with arthritis and it seems to help. I also have one older friend who swears by it. But studies have shown pretty conclusively that it does nothing.
I guess that says something about how scientifically-minded I am vs. how much I like to think I am.
“Studies have been negative to date, but my father swears by it.”
Regarding a recent post, let’s ask again: Why does the “anecdote versus analyzed data” argument work in politics?
To directly answer your question, it never seemed to work for me.
My friend gives it to her dog and swears it helps him. I have a female friend over 50 who uses it for arthritis and swears by it.
I agree that studies aren’t everything. If it works for you, it works.
I used it for my left knee, no effect. My dad tore his ligaments in his knee, and he swears by it.
Certain drugs work/don’t work with certain people. Give it a try.
licensed to kill time
John, are you feeling the aftereffects of The Great Dandelion Slaughter?
My understanding of Gluc/Chon is that the placebo effect is strong in some folks. And it has made a lot of money for the supplement folks. YMMV.
General Egali Tarian Stuck
Didn’t work for me. Not even a little. But there are many folks who swear it does for them, and different types of joint/connective tissue problems.
I’ve tried it myself and not noticed any significant difference in how my joints or my spine feels. Because the pills tend to be large and are a pain to take, it’s possible I don’t take it consistently enough for it to work well. One thing though, you should check out how much sodium is in any brand you try; some of them have enormous amounts of sodium.
So reports are coming in that a monster tornado hit Yazoo City, Mississippi. Hopefully the deaths and injuries will be minor.
And mercifully, since Mississippi is the reddest of red states, we won’t here from anyone how the tornado is God’s punishment for abortion/healthcare reform/support for Obama/etc.
Because if you know the person who it works for/happened to/whatever, then your data point is real.
Analyzed data is usually aggregated data. I remember reading an in depth article in the WSJ about cancer treatments. One treatment was experimental and was being studied for its effectiveness. The result of the studies showed that it didn’t work for most people. Hence the drug company wasn’t going to pursue it and would discontinue manufacturing it.
The problem was, it worked for a handful of people. And for those people it worked well, and no other drug seemed to work. The article outlined the struggle these people were facing as the drug was not going to be made any more. The medical researchers they’d been working with were stockpiling it for them from other studies around the country. They were experimenting with half doses to see if they could get by on that for longer. It was a tragedy in slow motion, because these individuals knew they would probably have a greatly reduced quality of life once they ran out of the drug, if they were alive at all.
The drug worked for them. It just didn’t work for enough of them. Take your medical studies with a grain of salt.
Didn’t do a damn thing for me but irritate the hell out of my stomach.
DOUBLING my mobic, on the other hand, was easier on my stomach and 3 days later I felt GREAT! Yes, I still know when it’s going to rain, but at least it doesn’t feel like my joints have been set aflame.
I’m going to go w/ placebo effect and expensive pee until I see some real evidence (increased range of motion; decreased pain). What works for my 8 yr old dog who has mild dyplasia is 375 mg bufferin twice a day. (He gets Rimadyl if he’s really stiff, but that’s too strong of a drug for everyday.)
The only way to find out if it works for you is to try it. I suggest using the kind that has MSM added to it. The combo works for me and for my dog. (We don’t take the same medicine. Hers is chewable)
I’m gonna hijack this here “open ” thread.
It works for my wife. She also swears by it.
General Egali Tarian Stuck
Obamunist Mother Ship flying too close to the ground?
Mr Cole has what scientists call “the butterfly malady”.
Radley might be a little slower than most, but eventually he gets it.
The Pasta machine came today, tonight we’ll be havin toasted ravioli.
And by “toasted” I mean breaded and deep fried. Alas the edit function, I knew him well.
My family physician recommended it, so I’d guess there is some evidence that it works. I’m pretty convinced it works for me – knees and hips. It does seem to take a month or so to take effect. Costco has in in liquid form – the pills are way too big – and that makes it easy – tastes sort of like cherry cough syrup. Fish oil also helps – twice a day. I do have to admit the I’m very susceptible to the placebo effect, but it usually doesn’t last very long, and I’ve been convinced enough to take the GC for more than a year now.
This is the best resource I know of for sorting out what supplements you might want to try. You may have seen this go around the interwebz a few weeks ago; the interactive chart presents the info in a useful way, and there is a pop-up menu on the side (“show me”) that allows you to sort for types of issues.
Looks like it might be worth looking at what the chart calls Devils Claw for arthritis/joint pain. (Wikipedia refers to the proper name Harpagophytum)
Interestingly (geek alert) the interactive chart bubbles are linked to a live google doc, so the latest studies can be added at any time.(/geekout)
Embrace rationalism. Science can’t tell you if something works or not. All it can do is provide meaningful evidence. I don’t know what the medical evidence for or against this substance may be. However, I know that personal anecdotes are completely, utterly useless. People make shit up. Not because they are lying or because they are stupid, but because it’s what our brains do. We are pattern forming animals. We can even make patterns that don’t exist and see things in all the wrong ways. (Google the “Thatcher Illusion”; it sure surprised me). That’s why we have double-blind clinical studies, which if done properly can sometimes shed light on the subject. Sometimes they are inconclusive. Still, it’s the best we have. Look at the evidence as it exists and be a man of science. Sometimes you have to accept that we just don’t know. If you put a 1000 different substances in your mouth, some would be harmless, some would be harmful and a small number would possibly do something, but probably only if it were refined into a medically useful delivery mechanism. Everyone needs to hold these companies to a high standard. Hold yourself to a high standard. (Steps off soap box)
JC, since this is an open thread, can the $1000 Wal-Mart gift card audio ads DIAF?
My dad’s a Pharmacist with joint problems. He’s been taking it for decades with no side effects. I took it for a joint injury. It took months but it got better. I’d say there’s no downside except cost and slow results.
i’m making some bolognese sauce right now (trying FX’s recipe). i’d love some homemade pappardelle to go with it…
My mom’s doctor told her “if you’d started taking this 20 years ago, I wouldn’t be referring you for a knee replacement.” Again, plural of anecdote is not data…
It worked for both my brother and me. We were both getting the earliest symptoms of arthritis (stiff fingers in the morning) and they did go away after after taking G/C. I switched to the type with MSM added only because a biologist friend told me there was scientific evidence it actually did something.
I’m not sure what the best dosage is. I take 2 500mg pills a day. The product I buy recommends 3 a day. I had been taking only 500mg a day and felt fine, but figured it couldn’t hurt to split the difference.
My ortho surgeon recommended it to me due to loss of cartilage in my knees. It took over a month, but I definitely noticed a difference. Noticed it as well after I stopped taking it due to budget constraints. Generally I am NOT susceptible to a placebo effect. Good luck!
I generally avoid trying to fix things with pills, unlike my 74 year old Pharmacist dad who’s all “Better living through Chemistry.” The CG seems to be gaining a good rep for all kinds of joint maladies so maybe there’s something there. Get a recommendation from a pro on brand. Prices vary by orders of magnitude and do not necessarily correlate to effectiveness.
I know alotta y’all dig rescue dog stories, so here‘s one from the Slope. A two-month-old, neglected, abused pit mix was pushed out of a car on Easter Sunday. Walks up to this guy, who adopts him & takes him to the ER. The puppy almost dies. The guy takes to the Internet. Money rolls in. Puppy gets better. Puppy comes home.
@cleek: Damn, that looks good.
@whatsleft: No one can tell if they are “susceptible to a placebo effect.” What does that mean? I’m not sure that has ever been tested. Question: “Are there some individuals who are routinely more likely to exhibit a placebo effect?” Hmm. It sounds like a good question. I bet there might be research on this. I defy you to explain how you can support this claim with regard to yourself in a meaningful way.
Sarah in Brooklyn
i take glucosamine/condroiton (which i can’t spell) and MSM, and swear by them all. i’m 52 and still running, so something must be working. personally i prefer the liquid glucosamine – i take it every day.
I have 2 vets, a convention one and holistic one. The holistic one has had me give VetriScience Glycoflex III daily since my Golden Alfie was 1 year of age. He will be 11 next month and still lies flat (like a bearskin rug) like a pup, and can turn right and left on a dime. Also, he can get up from a down position in a flash.
The thing is, though, that there are specific compounds that are important and are validated in the research studies, and others that are not. It seems that the glucosamine studies are not consistent, but those related to perna canaliculus (green-lipped mussel) are. Who knows though. Each professional you talk to has a different take.
GlycoFlex III contains Perna canaliculus, Glucosamine HCl, Dimethylglycine, Methylsulfonylmethane, Manganese, Vitamin C, Vitamin E, Selenium, Grape Seed Extract, and Glutathione. It is the most complete joint formula providing factors necessary for joint restoration, as well as added Methylsulfonylmethane for maximum comfort during recovery.
No matter what, though, it is the love of our family that sustains us. And, family, these days, is typically completed by the addition of its 4-footed members. My schtick (via my nonprofit that funds cancer research and treatment for working dogs) involves trying to lengthen the time we get to have with our furkids, realizing that all the diseases that plague us get our companion animals as well.
Since no one seems to pay me any mind unless I am giving stuff away, and part of my foundation’s mission is to support and promote holistically healthy and responsible dog care, I’m constantly creating prize-packed contests as an educational tool. Problem is: I have no money to advertise and suck at marketing skill, so even with $750+ in prizes, entries are scarce.
So, I came here to try and get some help in spreading the word about my latest: The Bone Appétit Recipe Contest. You can get the total scoop here: http://bit.ly/boneappetit
And, for the dog-loving photographers out there, I have the Paws 2 Connect Photo Contest. Again, lots of prizes and a pure cinch to enter.
I think the reason it’s so popular is that it has a nice sound and cadence in TV and radio spots. It’s medical corinthian leather.
Bill Clinton is in Mexico recommending another “Plan Mexico” based on the massive U.S. aid for Colombian counter-insurgency called “Plan Colombia”, which did help drive back leftist guerrillas, but also drug production and trafficking increased.
Gosh, I can’t wait ’til the U.S. achieves in Mexico the success we’ve had in Colombia, where 3 million people are internally displaced refugees, gov’t & military-linked right wing death squad narco-paramilitaries have taken over much drug trafficking, 1/3 of the legislature is either under arrest or investigation for collaborating with those death squad narco-paramilitaries, Colombian narco-traffickers and armed groups destabilize neighboring nations’ border areas, and 5 of the last directors of the state intelligence agency are under arrest for a massive illegal spying program in which the Colombian gov’t spied on human rights defenders, journalists, opposition politicians, prosecutors, even Supreme Court justices, all with U.S. provided electronic surveillance equipment.
Is it time for someone to lecture me again on how brilliant our all new COIN philosophy will allow us to totally do better than our massive Colombian success story?
I have RA and my I took it for awhile. My doctor was ambivalent about it; he was like, if you think it helps, go for it. If you don’t think it works, save the $20 or so it costs for a bottle.
I’m on prednisone and Methotrexate now and while my range of motion is diminished from what it once was (was diagnosed with RA at 26; I’m now almost 33), I can lift and do almost everything else I used to do.
I use it for arthritis in my fingers and it works really well. Without it my finger joints are stiff and sore in the mornings with it not at all sore or stiff. Been using it for years with no decrease in effectiveness. Buy it at Costco for the best deal.
Gave me terrible gas. Glucosamine is some sort of sugar and it feeds your intestinal bacteria.
From the reading I’ve done, the scientific tests haven’t been negative so much as mixed. Some well designed studies have found no positive results, some well-designed studies have found results. The New England Journal article published about a study said it showed significant reduction in pain among those with “moderate to severe” knee pain, but not those with less pain. I think that’s the definition of a mixed results.
I’d say try it and see if it helps. If you feel better, do you care if it is the placebo effect?
It’s been awhile since I had one, but dog biscuits ain’t not too bad.
The orthopedist who scoped my knee handed me JAMA articles, and said he takes it. (He is 6′ 9″ and big, played power forward for a good Fordham team). A retired hand surgeon I in the family says at 80, without it, he can’t walk.
I take it. It helps.
Didn’t do anything for me. John, aren’t you too young for joint problems?
I am 64, with arthritis minimal but developing for several years, primarily in knees and lower back and hips. Almost two years ago, I had to have surgery on outermost joint of forefinger on my right hand. The arthritis had caused fluid drainage problems, and a cyst had formed between the joint and the nail.
The surgeon who cleaned the mess out recommended I try Glucosamine chondroitan. He said that although human studies are still incomplete and not definitive, there were definitive studies on cats and dogs, and vets prescribed it to animals every day, with great results. We have given it to one of our cats with obvious positive results.
He emphasized patience is required, it could take 60-90 days for the effects to start taking hold and for you to to tell a difference.
I started in on the two tabs a day, and within three months, I experienced a 90% reduction in joint pain, especially when walking. Stairs are the worse.
So I highly recommend you try it. It will not hurt you. Your body may respond to it.
Also, start taking an Omega three fish oil supplement as well.
Finally, KEEP MOVING. Keep doing any and everything to strengthen the muscles that wrap and control your joints, including the knees, shoulders, elbows, wrists.
Studies over the past couple have years have shown that those developing arthritis, especially my age and older, after doing moderate, reasonable strength training, experienced a very high rate of lowered perceived pain.
I have expanded my back yard vegetable garden with an incredible amount of hard, physical labor over the past four weeks, and all but but my okra is planted, including a brand new strawberry patch. It was at times painful hard work, but I feel stronger for it.
The ad above this thread is live porn chat.
I fully support this.
licensed to kill time
When I read this I could just see Colbert doing it on one of his Cheating Death spots. Well done, sir.
My favorite story of the day: Anti-tax, teabagger-friendly Right Wing GOP candidate for Governor of Illinois paid $0 in federal taxes in 2009 on $119,970 adjusted gross income.
Before adding a drug, make sure your current pharmacopia isn’t adding to your problem. Case in point: I’m arthritic and was prescribed Avapro (ibrisartan) as an adjunt to my hypertension because my insurance cut Cozaar, (losartan). After a year of this I became aware of seriously growing physical cold while my arthritic hips were screaming louder every day. My doctor suggested cutting the latest drug off for a week and see what happened. Not only did the “cold” symptoms dissapear but my hip pain dropped back to pre-Avapro levels. (a great relief BTW!). Neither the coldness and hip agravation are recognized reactions against Avapro. (YES! talk with your doctor!). I changed insurance and am back on Losartan and currently have no (detectable) issues.
thanks for the tip! i can’t get the pills down either… too bad my nearest Costco is 45 miles away.
Ima go w/ placebo. What worked for me was getting a better chair at work.
My doctor at Kaiser Permanente HMO recommended Glucosamine alone for arthritic stiffness, saying there are studies showing it to be of value.
He said there are no similar studies showing any value for Chondroitin. My joints are less stiff/annoying since taking Glucosamine for many months. But then, it’s Spring and the birds are chirping and I can work outside.
What it means is, “pain” is a very subjective topic we haven’t established good clinic data to measure, but we have verified that it’s susceptible to neurological feedback. Some people are wired, or have trained themselves (usually unconsciously) to respond to a “placebo” by self-quieting the neuron triggers that are described as “pain”. Quieting the “pain” impulses reduces the inflammation that is part of the response to those impulses, and reducing inflammation is a significant part of the “healing” process. This is how placebos work, at our current level of understanding. Get over your bad scienticism-fixated self, already.
And speaking of placebos, my personal theory has been if it works consistently for dogs / horses / cats, it can’t be purely an effect of human neurofeedback. GC does seem to work for some percentage of companion animals, not all of them, just as it seems to work for some humans. The practical objections I’ve seen to trying it as a supplement is that it doesn’t work for everybody, it needs to be taken reliably for at least two months (vets have as much trouble getting compliance from their patients as MDs), and there’s not enough supervision over the strength and purity of the many different formulations out there.
Therefore, John, since you present yourself as very much a creature of habit, I’d suggest finding out precisely what brand & dosage your father speaks well of (since you are likely to be genetically compatible), and give yourself at least a 60-day trial before you decide whether or not you’re in the lucky population for whom it’s effective.
Glucosamine definitely works for me. Several times I stopped taking it because I still had some knee pain, so I thought it wasn’t doing anything – but when I stopped, the knee pain got noticeably worse. As others have said, it takes quite a while to take effect. And for those of you with gas issues, try another brand. There’s a brand my grocery store carries that really aggravates my acid reflux, but when I changed brands it got better.
Try weed. There’s a joke there somewhere re: joint pain.
The unofficial, unscientific, anecdotal report from some docs in Orthopedics is that it seems to work for about a third of the people who try it. So it is probably worth a try. Nobody seems to know why.
I am not sure what it does for the people who like it. It may not increase their range of motion or satisfy any objective criteria. It might just make them feel better.
@New Yorker: Tornado in Yazoo City:
Apparently 2 are confirmed dead and there are injuries but I don’t have any more information yet.
Not the first to say this, but it sure seemed to work wonders for my dog. Her back was in pretty bad shape by the time she was 12 from her habit of jumping up to greet people, and she would have episodes where she would whimper with pain so loudly that you could hear it across the house. Well, the vet put her on glucosamine, and she didn’t really have any problems for the next 5 years until we finally put her down because her cataracts and doggy Alzheimer’s were making her too prone to bite people.
Of course, this is no guarantee that it works for humans; after all, we can eat chocolate and sugar-free gum without dying.
Well, when treating any self-limiting condition, believing that a treatment will work is as important as the treatment itself. Unfortunately, that also means anecdotal experience really doesn’t tell us much about the effectiveness of a treatment.
What condition are you thinking about treating?
In any event, there are quite a large number of studies on its effectiveness. http://scholar.google.com/scholar?hl=en&as_sdt=2000&q=Glucosamine+chondroitin
The general consensus is that it’s probably a bit more effective than a placebo, but not enough to be statistically meaningful.
I take it regularly. Either it’s genuinely helpful, or it has a helluva placebo effect. In any case, it works for me and I wouldn’t face the day without it.
The really interesting thing about the placebo effect is the fact that there is a placebo effect.
No one knows why placebos work; how belief triggers a biochemical reaction; how or why the body’s autonomic systems react to something the mind accepts as real.
If it works, go for it. Just… don’t expect it to keep working, or to work well enough for long enough.
That’s the problem with placebos, and why we can’t base an entire medical theory on them: since we don’t know how or why they’re sometimes effective, we can’t regularize or improve their effectiveness.
Wile E. Quixote
He sounds foreign. I want to see his long form birth certificate to prove that he was really born in America.
All positive evidence regarding glucosamine is anecdotal, including mine. I take a generic (CareOne) MSM and glucosamine — two pills with the morning oatmeal before hitting the gym. My knees swear by the stuff.
Used to give my dogs supplements until Merrick started including it in their dog food.
Don’t know about human use.
I’ve given it to my cat, and it really made it easier for her to move around with a damaged spine and hips. We gave her twice the normal dose, and within a week or so, she could move at an almost normal gait.
It only lasted awhile–I think she re-injured herself because she felt better than she was. I suppose that’s testimonial, and I’m not sure how the placebo effect would work with a powder mixed into treat food.
@Ecologia: As a general rule NONE of the alternative medicines have worked for me, as neither has acupuncture. These are things that I consider “placebos” as there is not much actual science to support their effects (perhaps excusing acupuncture). These include things that I really wanted to work, such as echinacea. In this case, I am using “placebo” as a benign and/or unproven nostrum used in place of a proven medicine. My apologies if I’ve offended anyone’s belief in the use of alternative medicines.
And apparently it’s screwed up a good chunk of air travel elsewhere. My wife is waiting to see if she’s going to get out of Lexington, KY. Apparently the whole schedule there is messed up due to unspecified air traffic control delays.
The effects were subtle, but real, for me. It definitely helps me keep running with my aging knees. I’ve also had my 12-year-old Border Collie on it for the last year and it’s made a big difference on how he moves (he was getting pretty creaky). Also, zero side effects that I could detect. Recommended. BTW, make sure you get the pills formulated with manganese: The only study that I’ve seen w.r.t. this supplement used glucosamine/chondroitin/manganese.
I was going to link to the same chart.
I believe there is only one study on glucosamine in this google doc, though. A study from 2005 that found the evidence to be “2” (between low and conflicting).
Devil’s claw is the way to go if you can find it. I think you have to go to the old Chinese man that sells cute little creatures that you can’t feed after midnight or get wet.
HeartLand, you’re a gardener after my own heart. Regular strawberries (runners) or wild berries?
@HeartlandLiberal: This is good advice, esp. about keeping moving.
I guess I will tell my little story.
I had major knee problems a few years back, starting from moving furniture. I limped for two and a half months. I had an MRI which showed wear and tear. The lady who owns the gym I use suggested I use g/c, being sure that it also had MSM in it. She told me it would take at least 3 weeks to start helping. I got it at either Costco or Sam’s.
Well, within a few days, I was beginning to walk normally. Now I am careful to keep up with the leg lift machine at the gym, because that stabilizes the surrounding muscles. And I am careful not to twist my knee side to side when working around the house. I’ve had no more serious problems. And I have not continued to take it.
I will kick back in with it when it is warranted.
The vet suggested we try it for our 13 year old dog who moved stiffly. Now he will get excited and jump around like a puppy. It does seem to give him a little dry skin. We do have to put it into pill pockets to get him to take it.
My vet had us feeding it to our two elderly kittehs, seems to work fairly well. Also found out that if it works in humans, the formulation really matters: it’s got to be chondroitin SULFATE or you get bubkus. I’m not sure about the glucosamine (sulfated or otherwise), other than the nutraceuticals always have the two together.
Also to further clarify: you are talking about two separate compound: chondroitin sulfate and glucosamine sulfate, either of which can come without sulfation.
@Mike P: Methotrexate, ummm. Thank God when I got my gall bladder out the condition I took the methotrexate for cleared up. Immediately. If you have any digestive problems at all, pursue identifying gall bladder issues with your MD. Maybe its removal will help with your RA. (I didn’t have RA).
Of course this is only my anecdotal opinion. And gall bladder surgery is not without consequence.
I took methotrexate briefly for a problem unrelated to the knee problem mentioned above.
My opinion is when g/c combo was suggested for me, I tried it for a month, and got no impovement for my fairly severe osteoarthritis in one knee. The $30+ for a 2nd month’s supply sent me back to aspirin and acetaminophen.
Concentrated heavy metals in the crustacean shells used to make it are toxic.
This is a definite mis-statement of study results.
John, check out MedlinePlus (NIH website). For mild to moderate knee osteoarthritis it gives glucosamine an “A.”
For general osteoarthritis glucosamine gets a “B.”
For some reason they don’t include chondroitin.
As with all drugs and supplements, different people respond differently. I’ve never heard of any study showing either supplement to be harmful, so it seems worth trying. However, if you’re looking for shoulder relief, you’re probably working with a maximum grade of “B.”
This is what the NIH site says:
@Triassic Sands: Wow! Do you have a link for that?
I have a bottle of glucosamine sulfate that I haven’t been taking, but given the fact that tests show small arthritic changes in my both knees, shoulders and one ankle, and now that my right hip is starting to bother me, I think it’s time to start taking it.
I’m not sure if the placebo effect will help me. On the one hand, I was part of a mass hypnosis demonstration put on by a skeptic’s group when I was in university. I didn’t expect anything to happen, but on command, my right arm rose and rose, which amused me greatly.
On the other hand, I enthusiastically said yes to my first chance to get some acupuncture when I had some bad foot problems a few years ago. And .. nothing. It didn’t help at all. I refused any additional acupuncture when my shoulder went kablooie a couple of years ago and only got it back into shape with regular rehab exercises.
Chondroitan is a great Jerry Lewis word. ChonDROItan!
@LuciaMia: asked about strawberries I planted.
Regular strawberries, one of the “day neutral” varieties. You pinch the blossoms till Sept, and the runners, then let them bloom and produce. Next year, they should produce all season.
The classic and largest strawberries just produce once during season, in June.
There is an third, intermediate category, that will produce two or three times during the season. Both it and the day neutrals produce smaller berries, but spread through the growing season.
Also, a friend of my is taking me with her truck tomorrow to by at least four semi-dwarf fruit trees which I plan to plant. I think I can squeeze up to six or so into the yard with no problem and still have plenty of space and light. I have been reading up on the semi-dwarves. They are a little larger than dwarf, but produce sooner, and not as large as regular fruit trees. At my age, I worry about waiting a decade for maturity of the tree, and I am a suburban backyard gardener.
I fractured my pelvis 10 years ago & when they put me back together they couldn’t find all the pieces. As a result there is an area where the hip bone rubs against the pelvis. I used to swear by the G-C meds because I felt less pain when I took them & more when I didn’t.
Then I did a stretch out of work & had to cut expenses; G-C was one of the cuts. Funny thing is I didn’t notice more bad days or more pain then when I was taking it. I have not taken it for a couple of years now & don’t know if it never did anything other than physiological or is the joint has just worn smooth so it hurts less.
I’ve taken it for years. It really does seem to help keep the arthritis at bay for me. I’ve also given it to both German Shepherds at the advice of their vet. Before we had to put the 13 year old down, she didn’t hurt as bad from her arthritis. The 5 year old gets it now.
JR in WV
My boss had catastrophic damage to his shoulder when a stress fracture gave up during heavy bench press lifting. After surgery and PT he started on GS/CS and it helped quite a bit, BUT also caused his cholesterol to shoot up to a dangerous level. Turns out this is an uncommon negative side effect.
On the other hand, my board certified family practice / gerontologist doctor says the anecdotal evidence is too strong for this treatment to not work. Regardless of the studies.
So take it, but watch your cholesterol level closely.
More anecdotal evidence: it doesn’t work for me (elbow or shoulder) or my wife (shoulder).
The trainer at the gym swears by it when he strains an elbow or knee during workouts.
It did nada for me but my husband says it definitely made a difference for him. Instead I take turmeric for OA in my hands.
Cool, I got a front-pager miffed.
“Get over your bad scienticism-fixated self, already”
I am definitely guilty of scientism. The alternative, alternataivism (?), common sensism (?), anecdotalism (?) is simply ineffective and prone to lead to wildly wrong conclusions. Now, as part of scientism, I also embrace the notion that science proves absolutely nothing. Even the most well-supported scientific facts are provisional and open to interpretation. I still don’t understand how anyone can claim they are or are not prone to the placebo effect. Moreover, the placebo effect is sometimes hard to disentangle from the ups and downs that individuals often naturally feel over the course of an illness. That is, a person takes a pill, feels better. If the pill is sugar, is that a placebo effect or did they just happen to feel better after? Anyway, I really can’t get over my “bad scientism-fixated self” until you give me a better -ism to embrace.
One more thing, the neurology of the placebo effect is very interesting. Anne, do you have any references for the claim that some people have a placebo effect that actually leads to a measurable and consistent physiological response like a reduction in swelling? I don’t ask to challenge (well, maybe a little), but because that would be really cool. The first step to demonstrating efficacy is to show some physiological plausibility.
Spoken like a true GOP teagabber.
Absolutely. That bad scientism stuff is just plain offensive. We need to get rid of that bad scientism. Vaccines? Scientism, get rid of ’em. Modern dentristy? Scientism, deep six it. Surgery and anesthesia? Scientism, let’s go back to leeches to remove the evil humours. Engineering to build bridges? Scientism, we need to go back to guessing and if the bridge falls down and people die, hey! That’s the will of the gods.
The entirety of Peggy Noonan’s classic 2004 column is worth reading:
Next stop: the middle ages, courtesy of “get over your bad scientism.” Oh, indeed, as Omar from The Wire was wont to say.
Was actually prescribed by a surgeon. Apparently helps proactively.
It never did anything for me and I still ended up replacing both knees. I wanted it to work, but really, never felt a change at all.
I can’t speak for Anne’s sources, but the placebo effect can have a wide variety of physiological effects.
Here is a link to a widely cited review of placebos from 1995. http://jama.ama-assn.org/cgi/reprint/159/17/1602
I’m a rheumatologist and the stuff is useless. I say that because study after study shows it. The only people who think it works are the ones selling it or funding their own trials of it.
It’s safe. If it was free, I would consider using it. But I think the whole thing is snake oil.
Not only are all the studies in agreement that the stuff doesn’t have any effect, there is NO WAY that it can work as an oral supplement. Your system digests it completely, turning it into amino acids and sugars. This is is not any different than eating a hamburger (a very gristly one) with a bun. Nothing resembling the actual glucosamine chondroitin remains,
It works on my two dogs and my vet prescribes it according to some study on a particular supplement: dasuquin.
As for what really works for my poor arthritic Fergus: Elk Antler velvet and a proprietary mix of herbs in the Mobility formula from Wapiti Labs (wapitilabs.com). Since he’s a pup, there’s no placebo effect and observation has shown that his stilted gait and grunts of pain from arthritic elbows have gone away when he’s been on the stuff and it returns when he goes off it. This is irrespective of diet, time of year or other supplement use.
I do believe Wapiti has a study regarding its efficacy on their website.
I believe the huge problem with using GC and MSM in humans is that you need a source of the supplement that has been tested (assayed) to make sure the strength of the supp. is the same as what has been promised on the label. Only a couple of manufacturers do.
It worked for both my grandmother and mother but they each had to stop taking it due to it irritating their bowels. It’s a minor side effect that affects a small percentage of those who take it.
@kormgar: Thanks. It’s a pay only, so I’ll have to ILL it.
It was a miracle drug for my long-term arthritis I had in my sacroliliac joint from an accident. Now I run 15-20 miles a week. You need to take the full dosage for at least a month to see effects. I used to take pain meds daily for years.
It also worked on the dog I adopted as a crippled 9 year old who couldn’t walk. He runs like crazy now and I can barely hold him on walks. Stuff is amazing.
Comrade Mary, just google “medlineplus.” That will give you the whole site, which is one of the best medical sites on the Web.
This information is under “Drugs and Supplements.”
In my exp it only works for horses….and then not as well as adequan or legend.
I haven’t seen good results for either dogs or people…perhaps it is the economics of scale.
It seems to be one of those chicken or feathers meds. There do seem to be people it helps and it does seem safe to try.
A much larger percentage of people seem to do well with the omega 3 supplements. And it improves your lipids too. Make sure what you buy has removed the mercury. There is a prescription product that has a standardized dose, which is an ongoing supplement industry problem ,but most people seem to do well with an OTC product as well.
I’m not sure, but isn’t the big difference between Mexico and Colombia that in Colombia they actually grow product? Mexico is just a transit state, so you don’t get the vast rural support in the country like you do in Colombia where farmers grow coca. Shouldn’t that make it easier to stamp out, since you’re dealing with drug lords and their body guards and not entire rural communities that depend on the crop?
Tried it on the family dog, and damn me if the old fella wasn’t running around like a puppy again.
Funny. Despite the fact that anecdotes are useless as a means of making informed medical decisions, people continue to give them credence. Some anecdotes may be used to generate hypotheses. Nothing more. Then again, entire industries are built on the misplaced confidence in anecdotes. So, cheers to greater rates of employment. Cheers to Aristotle’s approach to science.
(I admit it. I have a bit of beating-a-dead-horse [open thread] syndrome.)
It helped my older cats immensely, in a combination formulation called Cosequin. A noticeable improvement in their mobility after a few months.