Should I Take Joint Supplements to Relieve my Knee Pain? | Carson Tahoe Health

Should I Take Joint Supplements to Relieve my Knee Pain?

A guest at our Sports Medicine and Orthopedic Symposium asked Dr. Sanjai Shukla at Tahoe Fracture and Orthopedic, “My right knee is stiff in the morning and when using stairs (usually upstairs), and walking and straightening it can hurt.  Would taking “joint juice” or glucosamine tablets help?” – Linda G.

Dr. Shukla’s Response:

There is a lot of conflicting information regarding Glucosamine and other “joint juice” preparations.  Some products claim to ease joint pain and improve your motion and some even claim to “cure” arthritis.  Part of the reason for this is that these products are not regulated by the FDA and therefore can be a little fast and loose with their claims.  In general, if it seems too good to be true, it probably is.

That being said, there is a lot of good anecdotal evidence out there that says Glucosamine and Chondroitin taken together may have some anti-inflammatory properties, and would at least be worth a trial of several weeks to see if they can reduce your stiffness and improve your function.  I would recommend getting a preparation from a reputable source, and following the dosage directions that are on the label.  Both GNC and Costco make Glucosamine/Chondroitin supplements that are reasonably priced and are held to appropriate manufacturing standards.  It is a good idea to keep a daily journal when you start the medication so you can remember how your knee felt before, during, and after the trial.  Hope this helps!