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SAMe is Comparable to Celebrex in Relieving Osteoarthritis Pain

Nov 05, 2004

SAMe is a supplement used in the management of osteoarthritis symptoms. SAMe has been compared to nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs in previous studies but has not been compared to the newer COX-2 inhibiting drugs. In this study the effectiveness of SAMe is compared to the most popular COX-2 inhibitor, Celebrex.

56 patients with active osteoarthritis of the knee completed a randomized, double-blind, cross-over study. They were given either 1,200mg of SAMe each day or 200mg of Celebrex. In the first month of the study Celebrex gave better pain relief than SAMe, but by the second month the amount of pain relief was equal. The ability to perform knee-isometric exercises was steadily improving over the course of the study with both treatments. The study is published in the February 2004 issue of the BMC journal Musculoskeletal Disorders.

Commentaryby Jerry Hickey, R.Ph.

The addition of SAMe to the treatment of osteoarthritis with Celebrex is reasonable since SAMe is safe and effective and works with a different mechanism of action than Celebrex.

Natural Supplements Have Proven Benefit for Treating Depression in Women

Double-blind, placebo-controlled studies support each of the following nutrients and modalities for treating depression in women: SAMe, 5-HTP, Omega-3 Fatty Acids, Folic Acid, St. John's Wort, exercise, acupuncture and light therapy. These treatments deserve further research and there appropriate place in the armamentarium for treating depression in women must be defined. The study appears in the Summer 2004 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Women's Association.

Commentary by Jerry Hickey, R.Ph.

The supplements cited in this study have a profound impact on depression. SAMe, 5-HTP, Fish Oils, and B-Complex vitamins are very safe and very helpful. I do not care for the herb St John's Wort because it has side effects and some serious drug interactions.

Review of Studies Supports the Use of Coenzyme Q10 in High Blood Pressure and Possibly Heart Failure

Hypertension: Researchers reviewed eight published trials of CoenzymeQ10 and its effect on high blood pressure. Altogether in the eight studies the mean decrease in systolic blood pressure (the top value) was 16 mm Hg, and in diastolic blood pressure (the bottom value) the mean drop was 10 mm Hg. The researchers conclude that Coenzyme Q10 is safe, nontoxic, and devoid of side effects and may have a role as an adjunct or alternative to conventional drugs used for treating hypertension.

Heart Failure: In a meta-analysis of nine randomized trials using Coenzyme Q10 for heart failure patients there was a trend towards improved left ventricular ejection fraction (better pumping action by the heart) and a decreased risk of death. The researchers performed their own study supplementing 35 heart failure patients with Coenzyme Q10 in a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled pilot study. They found that over a 3-month period, CoenzymeQ10, but not placebo, significantly improved symptoms and there was a trend towards improvement in exercise time. The review is published in the journal Biofactors, 2003;18(1-4):91-100.