A study has revealed that the extract from the bark of the French Maritime Pine Tree improves physical functioning by 52 percent among Osteo-Arthritic (OA) patients.
Osteoarthritis of the knee is one of the leading causes of disability among the elderly. OA affects people above 45 years of age, although, it could occur at any age. Although, there are plenty of drugs and shots to ease joint inflammation today, a study conducted by Dr.Ronald Watson of University of Arizona, found that pycnogenol, could be a safe nutritional approach that could reduce pain and improve physical functioning among OA patients.
Pycnogenol, which contains a unique combination of procyanidins, bioflavonoids, and organic acids, was chosen for the study, as it has the property of alleviating inflammation by inhibiting COX-1 and COX-2, and the pro-inflammatory ˜master-switch nuclear factor – Kappa B.
In the study, 35 volunteers falling under an average age group of 42 years were randomly given a daily dose of pycnogenol, 50mg, thrice a day, while the other group was under placebo for three months. The patients were asked to report the intensity of arthritic pain using the Western Ontario and McMasters Universities (WOMAC) OA index after 30, 60 and 90 days. Simultaneously the frequency and dosage of NSAIDS and COZ-2 usage was also recorded.
A review after two months showed that pain and physical function scores improved I nthe Pycnogenol group, and on completion of three months, the patients in this group reported 43 percent reduction in pain, while 35 percent reduction in stiffness was reported. The physical functioning was recorded at 52 percent. On the other hand, the placebo group showed no significant scores all through the study. Also there was considerable reduction in intake of NSAIDS and COZ-2 inhibitor pills in the Pycnogenol group.
“Pyconogenol is a safe nutritional approach to reduce pain and improve physical functioning among arthritic patients. It also controls inflammation, and its natural antioxidant properties have delivered excellent results,” reported Watson.
“The study clearly indicates that supplementing with Pycnogenol can fight joint inflammation and soothe joint pain and stiffness, making way for cartilage renewal with substances like glucosamine,” Watson concluded.