Arthritis sufferers may have their pain cut by 90% with the help of a drug-free compound derived from rose-hip.
The new research found that it has the power to reduce the agony of osteoarthritis sufferers by an astonishing 90%.
Human trials suggest a compound called GOPO – found in the rosa canina species of rose-hip – could provide a breakthrough for six million Britons whose lives are blighted by joint pain. Danish researchers found the specially cultivated compound reduced nagging joint pain in the hands of nine out of 10 of the trial participants when it was taken in supplement form.
Debilitating stiffness in finger and thumb joints – the calling card of osteoarthritis – can make tasks like opening jars, holding cutlery and tying shoelaces nearly impossible.
The results of investigations carried out at Frederiksberg University in Copenhagen and published in the Open Journal of Rheumatology and Autoimmune Disease demonstrate that the extract could offer natural pain relief, showing that sufferers were a third less likely to use conventional painkillers after taking the supplement.
Lead researcher Kaj Winther said: “GOPO has been shown to have anti-inflammatory and chondroprotective activity, helping to protect and repair joint cartilage even at low concentrations. The lessening of hand pain and stiffness observed in this study suggests it may play a key role in the drug-free management of osteoarthritis in the hand, providing sufferers with improved pain relief and mobility without the risk of harmful side effects.”
Father-of-three Steve Crosby, 48, was diagnosed with osteoarthritis at the age of seven and has relied ever since on super-strength doses of anti-inflammatory painkillers diclofenac and tramadol to relieve constant agony in his hands – until now.
Diabetic Steve, a company managing director from Berkshire, said: “I don’t like regular painkillers because of the damage they can do long term. GOPO has enabled me to reduce my diclofenac intake from eight-a-day to only two-a-day. I have experienced a significant reduction in pain and am relieved to have found something I can take long-term without the risk of damaging my health.”
Professor Andrew Moore, a leading researcher in pain at the Churchill Hospital in Oxford, is unhappy with the guidance U-turn, commenting: “The evidence supporting the use of paracetamol in OA is weak; it is far from an innocuous drug.”
With internationally recognised guidance backtracking on its own advice and pain experts publically disagreeing with its suggestions, patients may feel safer avoiding paracetamol altogether while this debate continues. Dr John Dickson, Clinical Advisor to NICE and Primary Care Rheumatologist, suggests: “GOPO is a natural supplement with a good level of evidence of efficacy in OA and an excellent benefit to risk profile. I would suggest that GOPO could be used as a first-line treatment for a 3-month trial period in patients with OA.”
Julie, a nurse and a Mum of two, was recently diagnosed with Osteoarthritis in her right knee after years of coping with excruciating pain.
“My favourite past time is playing tennis and badminton but I had to soon but that on the back burner as sudden movements or quickly changing direction was causing terrible shooting pains up and down my right leg. Since being diagnosed with osteoarthritis I decided to find an alternative treatment to paracetemol as I am very wary of the damage paracetemol can cause to my health if I take it on a long-term basis.”
Desperate to take a treatment that was natural but also had the clinical evidence to prove it worked Julie came across GOPO Joint Health.
“Since taking the treatment, I have found my pain levels have notably decreased and I am even enjoying a game of badminton with my friends again.”