Herbal Beats Pain Medication in New Arthritis Study!
Guest article by JacobTeitelbaum, MD
A new study reported at this year’s annual Arthritis World Congress (Osteoarthritis Research Society International, or OARSI) showed that a natural remedy — a special mix of the anti-inflammatory, pain-relieving herbs curcumin and boswellia found in Healthy Knees and Joints by EuroPharma was much more powerfully effective at relieving arthritis pain than the medication Celebrex.
“Wear-and-tear” arthritis (called osteoarthritis ) is one of the most commonly seen conditions afflicting Americans. A staggering 27 million in the U.S. have arthritis, usually in the joints of the knees, hips, neck, lower back, feet or hands. That includes two out of every three people over age 65!
To combat the pain of osteoarthritis, many Americans use over-the-counter and/or prescription Non-Steroidal Anti-Inflammatory Drugs (NSAIDs) such as aspirin, Motrin, Celebrex or Naprosyn. And they take a lot of them! Doctors write 70 million NSAID prescriptions every year, and over 30 billion OTC NSAID tablets are sold annually. But these are very risky drugs — they can cause stomach ulcers and GI bleeding that hospitalize more than 100,000, and kill over 16,000, people each year!1
In addition, these drugs dramatically raise the risk of cardiovascular disease. In one major study, NSAIDs doubled the risk of heart attack and tripled the risk of stroke!2 It’s reasonable to estimate that, all told, there are at least 30,000 unnecessary and largely preventable U.S. deaths from NSAIDs every year. Unnecessary, because natural remedies and other drugless treatments have been shown to be far more effective than NSAIDs at treating arthritis — and are far safer and cheaper, too!
The study was conducted by researchers on 28 people with osteoarthritis, who were divided into two groups. One group took Celebrex (100 mg, twice a day). The other group took a twice-daily dosage of 500 mg of an herbal combination containing a special, highly absorbable mix of curcumin and boswellia, which is sold in the U.S. under the name Healthy Knees and Joints (by EuroPharma).3
The researchers took measurements at the beginning of the study, and then after 12 weeks, of joint pain, joint tenderness, range of motion, crepitus (a crunching sensation in arthritic knees), and walking distance without pain. After 12 weeks, the difference in pain relief between the two groups was amazing.
Results Show Herbal Better Than Celebrex
At the beginning of the study, 79% of the people taking Celebrex were in moderate to severe pain. And after 12 weeks 50% of them were still in moderate to severe pain.
Now compare that to the folks who took Healthy Knees and Joints. At the beginning of the study, 86% of them were in moderate to severe pain — but after 12 weeks, only 21% were still in moderate to severe pain.
The bottom line is that taking the herbal remedy, as compared with taking Celebrex, helped many more people move from moderate/severe to mild pain!
The herbal remedy also worked far better than Celebrex in lessening joint tenderness, slightly better than Celebrex in increasing walking distance, and just as well as Celebrex in improving range of motion and crepitus (a crunching sensation in arthritic knees).
I think it’s flat out insane that doctors are continuing to prescribe deadly NSAIDs when all-natural, safe, lower cost, and more effective alternative treatments like Healthy Knees and Joints are available.
To read more about my four-step natural treatment for arthritis, please see Arthritis Pain — Effective Natural Therapies.
1″Gastrointestinal Toxicity of Nonsteroidal Antiinflammatory Drugs,” Wolfe MM, Lichtenstein DR and Singh G, New England Journal of Medicine, Volume 340, Number 24, pages 1888-1899.
2″Cardiovascular safety of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs: network meta-analysis,” BMJ 2011; 342 doi: 10.1136/bmj.c7086 (Published 11 January 2011)
3″Clinical evaluation of a herbal formulation, Rhulief® in the management of knee osteoarthritis,” Anthony, B and Kishakedath R, study presented at the 2011 World Congress of OARSI (Osteoarthritis Research Society International).
Jacob Teitelbaum, MD, is medical director of the national Fibromyalgia and Fatigue Centers and Chronicity, author of the popular free iPhone application “Cures A-Z,” and author of the best-selling books From Fatigued to Fantastic! , Pain Free 1-2-3—A Proven Program for Eliminating Chronic Pain Now, the Beat Sugar Addiction NOW! series, and Real Cause, Real Cure. Dr. Teitelbaum does frequent media appearances including Good Morning America, CNN, Fox News Channel, the Dr Oz Show and Oprah & Friends. He lives in Kona, Hawaii.