Study analyzes clinical trials of medications to control knee osteoarthritis pain

Bottom Line: Managing osteoarthritis requires long-term treatment for symptoms such as pain and changes in joint structure that can lead to disability. This study analyzed the combined results of 47 randomized clinical trials that lasted at least 12 months for 33 drug interventions and 22,000 patients with knee osteoarthritis. Researchers report uncertainty around the long-term effectiveness of medications to control pain for patients with knee osteoarthritis, including the two medications that were associated with improved pain (celecoxib and glucosamine sulfate). Large randomized clinical trials are needed to resolve questions regarding long-term pain control.

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Authors: Lucio C. Rovati, M.D., University of Milano – Bicocca, Monza, Italy, and coauthors

To Learn More: The full study is available on the For The Media website.

(doi:10.1001/jama.2018.19319)

Editor’s Note: The article includes conflict of interest and funding/support disclosures. Please see the article for additional information, including other authors, author contributions and affiliations, financial disclosures, funding and support, etc.

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Lucio C. Rovati

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