Pine Bark Naturally Reduces Osteoarthritis, Study Shows
17 Apr 2008
A new study has shown that Pycnogenol® , a natural pine bark extract, has the ability to naturally reduce pain and increase mobility in those suffering from osteoarthritis.
The study revealed a particularly high efficacy of Pycnogenol® for lowering joint pain by 55 percent, joint stiffness by 53 percent and increasing patients mobility almost three-fold. Overall osteoarthritis symptoms were shown to be reduced by 56 percent and moreover, patients required dramatically less standard pain medication. v
"Pycnogenol® seemed a natural fit for this study," said Dr. Gianni Belcaro, a lead researcher of the study. "There are a few main components contributing to the clinical picture of treatment management in osteoarthritis:
- inflammation causing a progression in the disease
- alteration of fatigue resistance
- muscular performance-reversing and blocking the vascular problems associated to altered mobility.
Theoretically, a treatment with a compound specifically active on all those aspects could be highly effective, which is why we chose Pycnogenol®."
After three months, scores for pain dropped significantly for the Pycnogenol® treatment group and no significant effects were recorded for the placebo group. Scores for stiffness were reduced by 53 percent. The scores for physical function were reduced by 57 percent in the Pycnogenol® group and improvement under placebo was not significant. The global WOMAC score decreased following Pycnogenol® treatment and very little in the placebo group, from 56 percent vs. 9.6 percent for Pycnogenol® and placebo, respectively.
Pycnogenol® is a natural plant extract originating from the bark of the maritime pine that grows along the coast of southwest France and is found to contain a unique combination of procyanidins, bioflavonoids and organic acids, which offer extensive natural health benefits. The extract has been widely studied for the past 35 years and has more than 220 published studies and review articles ensuring safety and efficacy as an ingredient. Today, Pycnogenol® is available in more than 600 dietary supplements, multi-vitamins and health products worldwide.
"The results of this study are significant as they clearly demonstrate the clinical action of Pycnogenol® on OA and management of symptoms. The use of Pycnogenol® may reduce costs and side effects of anti-inflammatory agents and offer a natural alternative solution to people suffering from OA" said Dr. Belcaro.
The benefits of Pycnogenol® for arthritic joints are suggested to result predominantly from the anti-inflammatory potency of Pycnogenol® which was demonstrated in a series of clinical investigations in the past. There are more breakthrough studies on Pycnogenol® and osteoarthritis expected to be published next year allowing for development of innovative, natural formulas for joint health.
The randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study, held at Italy's Chieti-Pescara University, sampled 156 patients with osteoarthritis of the knee (OA). Patients were administered 100 mg Pycnogenol® or placebo, daily for three months. Symptoms were evaluated by WOMAC index scores and mobility by recording their walking performance on a treadmill. Patients were permitted to continue taking their choice of pain medication provided they recorded every tablet in a diary for later evaluation.
"Treatment of osteoarthritis with Pycnogenol®. The SVOS (San Valentino osteo-arthrosis study). evaluation of signs, symptoms, physical performance and vascular aspects"
G. Belcaro, M. R. Cesarone, S. Errichi, C. Zulli, B. M. Errichi, G. Vinciguerra, A. Ledda, A. Di Renzo, S. Stuard, M. Dugall, L. Pellegrini, S. Errichi, G. Gizzi, E. Ippolito, A. Ricci, M. Cacchio, G. Cipollone, I. Ruffini, F. Fano, M. Hosoi, P. Rohdewald Phytotherapy Research - Volume 22, Issue 4 , Pages518 - 523 Click here to view abstract online