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The "conservative therapy" for osteoarthritis

Posted Sep 14 2008 5:25pm

(Posted by Patrick Sullivan Jr.)

I happened across this A.D.A.M illustration of a knee with osteoarthritis.

The most common cause of knee damage requiring knee replacement is osteoarthritis, which is a degenerative disease of the bones of the knee which cause the surfaces of the knee joint to become irregular and rough, preventing smooth painless motion of the knee joint.

Knee joint replacement may be recommended for:

  • knee osteoarthritis or arthritis, which causes knee pain that has failed to respond to conservative therapy (NSAID medication for 6 months or more)[emphasis mine]
  • decreased knee function caused by arthritis
  • inability to work because of knee pain
  • inability to sleep through the night because of knee pain
  • inability to walk more than 3 blocks because of knee pain
  • loose knee prosthesis
  • some knee fractures

So "conservative therapy" is pain management through NSAIDs for 6 months? How is pain management supposed to make the problem better?

What about taking some calcium and magnesium? What about trying glucosamine sulfate? Fish oil? Systemic enzymes? All of these have plenty of clinical studies.

And didn't anyone read the study from last year that each dose of NSAID increases the risk for high blood pressure? Well, not to worry there is since there are plenty of blood pressure prescription medications. won a Webby this year for being the best health website on the net. Not surprisingly, it has history and ties to pharma giant Merck. I've looked at several times in the last 6 months. As far as I can tell, Healthline is garbage.

Of course I'm biased, but if you want to research natural and alternative cures, go to the database at

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