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Osteoarthritis: Potential for Herbal Medicines as Therapies in the Management of Chronic Inflammatory Damage

[ Vol. 14 , Issue. 2 ]

Author(s):

Diana R. Cundell* and Kathryn E. Mickle   Pages 68 - 80 ( 13 )

Abstract:


Osteoarthritis results from a chronic inflammation-mediated destruction of synovial joints particularly in the hand, hip, and knee. Intervention strategies primarily focus on reducing this inflammation and its associated pain and involve a hierarchy of pharmaceuticals designed to prolong activity and prevent early joint replacement. Unfortunately, side effects from these agents are significant and their efficacy, especially in the later stages of the condition, variable. For this reason, many patients are seeking out alternative interventions, including herbal medicines, which are natural and safe. This review will evaluate the current understanding of the pathophysiology and immunological changes that occur in osteoarthritis and identify areas where herbal medicines could improve treatment strategies.

Keywords:

Chronic inflammation, COX-2 (cyclooxygenase 2 inhibitor), curcumin, double-blind randomized placebocontrolled trial, herbal medicine, NF-κβ (nuclear factor kappa beta) and NSAID (non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug).

Affiliation:

College of Life Sciences, Jefferson University, 4201 Henry Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19144, College of Life Sciences, Jefferson University, 4201 Henry Avenue, Philadelphia, PA 19144

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