Joint Pain Forum – News you can use!
Pain Medication Safety Not Guaranteed
S. Torkos, B.S.Phm..
Americans spend millions on pain medications and anti-inflammatory
drugs. More medications are purchased for the control of arthritis
symptoms than for any other disorder. Despite the popularity of the
various arthritic medications, their safety is not guaranteed.
The most commonly used class of drugs for arthritis is the
non-steroidal anti-inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs). Long-term NSAID use
causes hundreds of deaths and is associated with thousands of
hospitalizations due to side effects such as stomach ulcers and bleeds.
There is also evidence that NSAIDs are counterproductive to joint
health. A study published in The Lancet found that NSAIDs contribute to
Another class of NSAIDS, called Cox-2 inhibitors, has been in the news.
Vioxx and Bextra have been removed from the market due to increased
risk of heart attack and stroke. Celebrex, still prescribed today, has
been linked to death and numerous cases of severe gastrointestinal
Natural Remedies to Stop Inflammation
Many nutrients and herbs calm the inflammatory response to allow
healing. The most researched include Celadrin, curcumin and fish oils.
One of the newest, most effective, natural anti-inflammatory products
is Celadrin, a patented blend of special fatty acids. Results of a
double-blind, multi-center, placebo-controlled trial published in the
Journal of Rheumatology (JOR) found that Celadrin, when taken orally,
improved joint and mobility problems. Participants taking Celadrin had
more flexibility, fewer aches, less pain and were able to walk longer
distances than the placebo group.
Researchers at the University of Connecticut studied the effectiveness
of Celadrin cream in 42 patients with knee osteoarthritis. Tests of
physical function included stair climbing, muscle strength and
endurance, and mobility of the knee. The group receiving Celadrin had
outstanding results with reduced pain and stiffness, improved balance
and strength and better mobility. Some benefits were noticed within 30
minutes of applying the cream. Results of this study were published in
the JOR (August 2002.) Those using the oral form of Celadrin and the
cream together experienced a much faster improvement in pain, swelling
and mobility than those using the cream alone.
Esteemed by Ayurvedic practitioners for centuries, turmeric contains
anti-inflammatory curcuminoids which reduce pain by blocking the
enzymes that cause inflammation and inhibiting the breakdown of
arachidonic acid. Several studies have shown dramatic improvements in
symptoms experienced by rheumatoid arthritis sufferers. Turmeric is
also an antioxidant. Researchers at the University of California found
that curcumin, in both low and high doses, reduced the inflammatory
immune factors secreted in the brain. This finding means turmeric shows
great promise for the treatment of Alzheimer’s and memory decline.
Fish Oils Omega-3s EPA and DHA Halt Inflammation
The first scientific paper describing the use of fish
oil for treating rheumatoid arthritis was published in the 18th
century. Since then, numerous studies have revealed the beneficial
effects of fish oil on various inflammatory conditions. The benefits
were attributed to the Omega-3 fatty acids EPA and DHA. EPA and DHA are
incorporated into the cellular membranes and compete with arachidonic
acid which creates inflammation in the body.
A 1998 research review confirmed the beneficial effects
of fish oil in the treatment of arthritis. Fish oil reduces arthritis
symptoms such as pain, number of affected joints and morning stiffness.
It also appears that fish oil will help reduce the amount of NSAIDs
For those suffering with arthritis it is important to
be aware of your treatment options. Medications, while helpful for
some, can be associated with many side effects. Natural products such
as Celadrin, Curcumin and Fish oils can offer great benefits and better
Sherry Torkos, B. Sc, Phm is a pharmacist, author and
certified fitness instructor. As a leading health expert, she has
delivered hundreds of lectures to medical professionals and the public,
and is frequently interviewed on radio and TV throughout North America.
She has authored eight books, including The Glycemic Index Made Simple
(Wiley, 2007), Winning at Weight Loss (Wiley, 2005) and Breaking the
Age Barrier (Penguin Books, 2003). Sherry received her Bachelor of
Science degree in Pharmacy from the Philadelphia College of Pharmacy
and Science in 1992, and lives in the Niagara region of Ontario.
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