Here's a brief summary on how viscosupplementation can treat arthritis: "Osteoarthritis should no longer be considered an inevitable accompaniment of aging but rather a dynamic and largely treatable disease. Recently, the FDA approved the use of hyaluronan (hyaluronic acid, hylan), a high molecular weight sugar, for the treatment of osteoarthritis of the knee for patients who have failed treatment with acetaminophen, NSAIDs (nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory agents) and physical therapy. The drug is given as a series of weekly injections directly into the affected joint (viscosupplementation) over three to five weeks. The beneficial results -- relief of pain, improved joint mobility and improved ambulation -- appear to last for several months to one year." Barland, MD. Emerging Treatments: Viscosupplementation for Osteoarthritis "The Doctor Will See You Now." 2005.
Balazs EA, Denlinger JL: Sodium hyaluronate and joint function. J Equine Vet Sci 1985; 5: 217-28. return
Balazs EA: The physical properties of synovial fluid and the special role of hyaluronic acid. In: Helfet A, editor. Disorders of the knee. Philadelphia: Lippincott; 1974: 61-74. return
Kitoh Y, Katsuramaki T, Tanaka H, et al: Effect of SL-1010 (sodium hyaluronate with high molecular weight) on experimental osteoarthritis induced by intra-articularly applied papain in rabbits. Folia Pharmaco Jpn 1992; 100:67-76. return
Hascall VC, Hascall GK: Proteoglycans. In; Hay ED, editor: Cell biology of the extracellular matrix. New York: Plenum Press 1981: p 39-63. return
Kuettner KE: Osteoarhtritis: cartilage integrity and homeostasis. In: Klippel JH, Dieppe PA, editors; Rheumatology, St. Louis: Mosby - Year Book Europe Limited, 1994: p 6.1 - 6.16. return
Leardini G, Mattara L, Franceschini M, Perbellini A. Intra-articular treatment of knee osteoarhtritis. A comparative study between hyaluronic acid and 6-mehtylprednisolone acetate. Clin Exp Rheumatol 1991; 9:375-381. return
Adams ME, Atkinson MH, Lussieri AJ, et al. The role of viscosupplementation with hylan G-F20 (Synvisc) in the treatment of osteoarthritis of the knee: a Canadian multicenter trial comparing hylan G-F 20 alone, hylan G-F 20 with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) and NSAIDs alone. Osteoarthritis Cartilage 1995; 3:213-225. return
Muller-Fabender H, Bach GI, Haase W, et al. Glucosamine sulfate compared to ibuprofen in osteoarthritis of the knee. Osteoarthritis Cartilage 1994; 2:61-69. return
Brittberg M, Lindahl A, Nilsson A, et al. Treatment of deep cartilage defect in the knee with autologous chondrocyte transplantation. N Engl J Med 1994; 331:889-895. return
What is glucosamine?