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Author Topic: Glucosamine/Chondroitin  (Read 5376 times)

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Offline eaglemom

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Glucosamine/Chondroitin
« on: September 13, 2010, 05:34:18 PM »
So I know this has been discussed before but lets discuss it again, if we could.  I've very confused.  Of course the makers all say it works - but then again there are so many varieties how do you choose?  My surgeon says don't bother because the evidence isn't there to support findings that it helps.  However my pt guy says finding support that it helps! The person at the health food store says it won't hurt you but won't help.  So why take it is my thought.

Having said all of that I'm needing to start taking something.  This is knee surgery #4 - next one will be a total.  I'm hoping to put that off for several years.  Also the glucosamine comes in different forms - sulfate and another one. Of course the liturature is conflicting about that also. Thus the reason I"ve done nothing.

So what are your opinions? Thx, eagle

Offline Lottiefox

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Re: Glucosamine/Chondroitin
« Reply #1 on: September 13, 2010, 05:43:43 PM »
I have two OSs.....OS Numero Uno (conventional) swears by taking it. He believes it helps you rebuild what you've lost. OS Numero Deuz (pioneering, bit mad!) says don't bother. Won't hurt you but won't do much.

I took it for about 3 months. Then I got bored.....did it help.....perhaps, but I also removed impact activity from my gym routine and did some proper PT....so who knows. I think I will start it again - I also need all the help I can get with cartilage!

The variant that suited me and is at the right level is made by Kordells and is Glucosamine and Chondroitin plus Esther C (no idea what that is) - it has a decent dosage and many of the "health food shop" or "Jointcare" formulas aren't actually very strong. It also never gave me indigestion as some makes can do.

I also took Rosehip capsules for a while - i think they actualy helped the general achiness in the winter. I shall start those again....

Hope this helps,

Lottie
Bilateral patella OA since 2009, no surgeries.
Euflexxa working well x3 to current
Right forefoot CRPS post fusion surgery 2011
Refusing to let the ailing parts stop me....

Offline kscope09

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Re: Glucosamine/Chondroitin
« Reply #2 on: September 13, 2010, 08:33:05 PM »
I've been taking glucosamine with chondroitin along with codliver oil for the alst 18 months.  i don't know if it really works though or perhaps I'm using an inferior brand.  I've been taking it on the reccommendation of both my OS and pt.  As for glucosamine being able to re-build lost cartliage, I think this is a bit ahrd to believe but it should help to slow down the process of cartliage wear and tear.  I wish I'd taking these suppliments back in the good old days when my knees were supple and strong as a way of lessenning future damage and wear as it seems like I'm closing the door when the horse has bolted.
Feb 08 Inurred right knee
18 months of physio, knee tracking but knee still painful
Aug 09 Scope - Small tear in acl, fragment found in postereo-lateral compartment, suprapatella and lateral plica and small defect in mfc.
May 10 Right knee feeling better but left knee causing trouble as a result o

Offline prech

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Re: Glucosamine/Chondroitin
« Reply #3 on: September 13, 2010, 09:22:05 PM »
Just to chime in, my PT has mentioned glucosamine may require 6-12 months before revealing any beneficial effects.  I'm fortunate to not have significant cartilage problems (just some mild pain during shifting weather patters), but I have a family history of osteoarthritis, plus Asians tend to be more prone to arthritis, so I've been taking glucosamine/MSM off and on for a good 5 years now.

I also take omega-3 fish oil and would recommend this over flax seed for those looking for direct DHA/EPA supplementation

Offline jt801

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Re: Glucosamine/Chondroitin
« Reply #4 on: September 14, 2010, 02:03:14 AM »
Its definitely a confusing issue, depending on who you listen to. I have been taking some form of glucosamine/chondroitin since my microfracture surgery 19 months ago. My OS never recommended it but his assistant did and my friend who is an athletic trainer said i should start taking it too. My thought was what could it hurt and it might help. I started out taking Osteo bi-flex but in the last 6 months or so i switched to the drinks (Elations or Joint Juice) which i like better than those big pills. As to whether it works, all i can say is that on several occasions i have run out of drinks and wasnt able to get to the store for a week or so and it seemed like my knee achiness became more noticeable during those times. That may have been in my mind, i dont know, but i will continue to take it.
12/99 left knee lateral release and plica removal
1/09 right knee chondroplasty and microfracture LFC

Offline eaglemom

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Re: Glucosamine/Chondroitin
« Reply #5 on: September 14, 2010, 03:34:41 PM »
Thanks everyone for their input.  I hate to take something that might not work, but at this point if it even helps a little its probably worth it.  Glusosamine nor chondrotin will necessarily hurt you in this amount, I think! Now to decide which brand, etc. Keep up the good discussion.

Offline KartBoy

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Re: Glucosamine/Chondroitin
« Reply #6 on: September 14, 2010, 07:16:02 PM »
While I was in the process of getting approval for MACI the OS (a registrar rather than consultant) suggested I try it. He told me the evidence was minimal with results mixed but did say that I needed to take at least 1500mg (1.5g) a day for two - three months, any less would be a waste of time and minimum 2 - 3 months for noticable effect.

I ended up taking Glucosamine + MSM from healthspan, its not cheap and after four months don't feel it had any effect except if anything to make my constipation a bit worse (which my wife also reported). I stopped after four months, didn't notice any change. Its worth mentioning that at that time I was in increasing levels of pain which it didn't have any apparent effect on. I have heard stories of it working for some but it didn't work for me.
7th Mar 08 - Pedestrian hit by car
10th Mar 08 - TPF (Plate + 6 screws)
12th Mar 08 - TPF Revision
Feb 09: Hardware removed + scope
Jun 10: ACI Stage I
Aug 10: ACI II (Stanmore)
Oct  11 - MRI + Scope (In pain)
Aug 12 - MRI + Scope (In more pain)
Sep 12 - TKR ruled out :(

Offline kris_83

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Re: Glucosamine/Chondroitin
« Reply #7 on: September 15, 2010, 10:32:34 AM »
wanted to chime in on this and ask an additional question...

I started taking a blend of glucosamine/chondroitin/MSM in July when I finally went off my pain meds. I think it does help in my day-to-day flexibility but maybe not so much the achiness. Unfortunately, since I started taking it my blood pressure is up. I've read that this is a possible effect of the supplement... but I don't really think it's worth the risk so I am considering going off it.

Lottie, what kind of dosing do you use in rose hip? I might try that instead before I end up on hypertension meds.
12/09 dx- patellar subluxation (not!)
1/10 mri- neg; PT rx failed
4/10 more PT
5/10 dx patellar hypertension
6/7/10 chrondroplasty, patellar decompression, synovectomy and plica excision
5/6/11 dx RA, sjogren's

Offline eaglemom

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Re: Glucosamine/Chondroitin
« Reply #8 on: September 15, 2010, 02:46:50 PM »
I went to the store to look at purchasing something, I didn't know brand, etc. However I very quickly became overwhelmed. Lots of Glucosamine/Chondroitin products out there.  Then do you use glusocamine sulphate or glucosamine hcl. Opinions differer as to which is better. I'm thinking the sulfate, but I'm not totally sure. I spoke with the sales person who also said "may work may not" and really was less than helpful.  My decision - I left without purchasing a darned thing. I guess I should just walk in buy a bottle and ask no questions - but that's just not me.  Maybe  I'll try again next time I'm out, or not! Should this be so hard? I'm thinking no it should not.

Offline Lottiefox

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Re: Glucosamine/Chondroitin
« Reply #9 on: September 15, 2010, 03:08:06 PM »
Its the dosage which is important as Kartboy mentioned - 1500mg per day to start with. Some commercial brands just don't cut it with the levels.

Kris - I wasn't aware they can trigger elevated blood pressure. perhaps with my Celebrex too I'll stick to the rosehips! I take Litozin - you take 6 tablets a day (3 in morning 3 later on) for 3-5 weeks then drop to 4 a day as maintenance. Each tablet is 750mg I think.

I've also just ordered some Flexeze Fortify after seeing another member mention them. Apparently this rebuilds cartilage so I am expecting new kneecaps in about 2.5 weeks.  ::) :P  You have to mix in a drink - bet it tastes like ****

Lottie
Bilateral patella OA since 2009, no surgeries.
Euflexxa working well x3 to current
Right forefoot CRPS post fusion surgery 2011
Refusing to let the ailing parts stop me....

Offline kris_83

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Re: Glucosamine/Chondroitin
« Reply #10 on: September 16, 2010, 10:24:04 AM »
Thanks as always, Lottie the expert! Is there anything joint-related that you don't have an answer for?  :)

I think 2.5 weeks is a totally reasonable expectation for brand new cartilage... you just have to water it daily, right? Sounds like you might have to plug your nose and chug though.

Now that I am on my 3rd day with no supplements I am starting to feel it for sure. The fact that it's raining like a b-stard is not helping either but I am back to old-time creaky levels. Something to be said for those stinky little vitamins... arghhhh!
12/09 dx- patellar subluxation (not!)
1/10 mri- neg; PT rx failed
4/10 more PT
5/10 dx patellar hypertension
6/7/10 chrondroplasty, patellar decompression, synovectomy and plica excision
5/6/11 dx RA, sjogren's

Offline messie_jessie

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Re: Glucosamine/Chondroitin
« Reply #11 on: September 17, 2010, 09:39:05 AM »
My OS advised that glucosamine does help in the long term and that high doses were best. I'm taking 1000mg high strength supplements daily. He also advised that the fancier-bells-and-whistles varieties weren't worth it and that plain old glucosamine was the man for the job. I've also been trying recently a protein-rich diet to help rebuild my muscles and cartilage. To soon to tell yet if it's helping my knee but I'm certainly getting toned arms from all the crutching!
Hope that helps and wishing you a speedy recovery!
Medial meniscus right knee microfracture 2006
Medial femoral condyle right knee microforacture 2010

Offline Kaputt_Knee

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  • [Ed: Sue sadly passed away in 2016]
Re: Glucosamine/Chondroitin
« Reply #12 on: September 17, 2010, 11:12:20 AM »
The newly published report linked in the News Box (top right of the board's Home page) makes interesting reading. It is a meta study of exactly this subject. It was published in the British Medical Journal yesterday.

http://www.bmj.com/content/341/bmj.c4675.full

The conclusions are interesting to say the least!

 ;)
1989 big trauma R. knee - sorted
1990-2004 3ACL recons and 20+ arthroscopies -RK
3/06 LK ACL torn!
4/06 ACL recon, kneecap broken
09 &10/06- 2x meniscus trims
3/07 - Notch Plastic & Lateral Release
14/8/08 complete revision ACL plus LCL/PLC recon
6/2/09 returned to skiing! Whoopee

Offline WestPoint

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Re: Glucosamine/Chondroitin
« Reply #13 on: September 17, 2010, 02:34:28 PM »
Thanks Kaputt Knee,

Well, that study is the icing on the cake for me. I will not be wasting my time with buying this stuff any more!

Lottie, let us know if you find the Flexeze Fortify helps at all.

Offline KartBoy

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Re: Glucosamine/Chondroitin
« Reply #14 on: September 17, 2010, 06:14:16 PM »
Its not the easiest of papers to read and supplement manufacturers won't be too happy with its conclusions but having tried the stuff for a good few months at fairly high doses with no noticable effect I would tend to agree with it.

They do make it clear at the end though that the supplements arn't dangerous (although side-effects causing people to stop using it are not uncommon) and they do appear to work for some people. I think its up to the individual to try it for themselves, just don't expect it to be available on prescription anytime soon.
7th Mar 08 - Pedestrian hit by car
10th Mar 08 - TPF (Plate + 6 screws)
12th Mar 08 - TPF Revision
Feb 09: Hardware removed + scope
Jun 10: ACI Stage I
Aug 10: ACI II (Stanmore)
Oct  11 - MRI + Scope (In pain)
Aug 12 - MRI + Scope (In more pain)
Sep 12 - TKR ruled out :(