Pentosan For Arthritis

We all know someone who suffers from osteoarthritis (OA).Osteoarthritis is a debilitating and progressive disease without a cure. Medications to suppress the pain of arthritis do nothing to slow down the worsening of the underlying condition. Something better is sorely needed. In osteoarthritis joint cartilage, whose function is to cushion the impact of weight bearing on the joint, is gradually worn down. As the cartilage wears down the patient winds up with a bone-on-bone friction that happens with movement of the joint, resulting in the pain and inflammation which characterizes osteoarthritis. Inevitably, a stiffening and immobilization of the joint occurs and the patient suffers from a worsening disability with the pain affecting the ability to work and enjoy the activities of normal living. As current treatments only manage the symptoms and don’t slow down the disease, there is an urgent need to come up with something that can slow down or possibly reverse osteoarthritis itself.  Because of the weight bearing function of the hip and the knees, pain associated with them account for as much as approximately 70% of cases of clinically significant osteoarthritis.


Now We Have Pentosan

There has been extensive study of Pentosan which has even been granted FDA approval for the veterinary treatment of osteoarthritis in horses!

How effective is PENTOSAN against pain in Osteoarthritis ?  A double-blind randomized placebo-controlled clinical study of over 100 subjects who had  moderate to severe knee osteoarthritis documented that six-weeks of treatment with Pentosan given via twice per week showed significant pain reduction when compared to placebo.

Of great significance was that there was also a reduction in bone marrow lesions, characteristic of the underlying osteoarthritic condition. The researchers felt that biomarker signals indicate that PPS (pentosan polysulfate) could be altering progression of the disease itself. The FDA approved a phase III clinical trial which will study the effect on pain and function with over 900 patients. With the need for treatment of this extremely common condition, use of this by physicians has been OK’d by the Australian Therapeutic Goods Administration’s (TGA) Special Access Scheme and the FDA’s Expanded Access Program. Preliminary results with severe OA sufferers involving a variety of joints- hips, knees, back, shoulders, and hands, have so far been positive. Rheumatoid arthritis is an entirely different type of disease affecting the joints. It is considered an autoimmune disease state. Although less information is available for pentosan’s use in Rheumatoid arthritis practitioners experienced with Pentosan have also applied this treatment to that condition as well, to reduce their patient’s pain and swelling of the joints.

PENTOSAN may become an important approved non-opioid treatment. Unquestionably there is a worldwide need for effective non-addictive treatment to take the place of opioids in chronic pain conditions, with all of the problems and tragedies associated with opioid use.

How does Pentosan work? Pentosan slows the degeneration of cartilage by influencing the body’s production of inflammatory chemicals. Pentosan enhances the availability of proteins naturally used in keeping cartilage healthy. In addition to reducing inflammation, Pentosan increases the viscosity (thickness) of joint fluid which can then better cushion the joint. Pentosan exhibits a mild blood-thinning property which improves blood flow to the area further improving healing and recovery. In summary, there are two main  actions that PPS has been shown to have- improving blood flow to the affected area and reducing inflammation  and thus edema and pain . The Australian company Paradigm Biopharma studying this claims that approximately 90% of  patients with knee arthritis report significant relief. 

The Treatment Regimen

The treatment consists of injections given one or twice per week for 6 to 10 weeks. Commonly used anti-inflammatory nonsteroidal medications such as Motrin and Advil (ibuprofen) tablets were not to be taken for at least two weeks prior to starting the pentosan injections.

What can Pentosan do that nothing else can? Pentosan may be Disease Modifying!

What is considered a disease modifying treatment is one that can delay or slow the progression of a disease by affecting its underlying cause. There are currently no FDA approved disease modifying osteoarthritis drugs available. Research has demonstrated that Pentosan stops structural changes found in arthritic joints, thereby improving symptoms like stiffness and painThis research has led to studies which it is hoped will result in Pentosan injections becoming the first disease modifying osteoarthritis medication to be FDA approved.

Another study showed that after 6 weeks of Pentosan injections, 80% of patients reported feeling better with a change that provided a real world difference in pain with knee flexion, pain with walking and pain with stair climbing, for one year following treatment. If pentosan is further proven to be effective for the treatment of symptoms as well as a treatment which can slow down osteoarthritis progression it will have enormous significance.

 Along with consideration of pentosan, there are other safe and available Regenerative Medicine approaches to osteoarthritis that have been used by forward thinking practitioners. These include PRP (platelet rich plasma) and stem cell treatments .

What is PRP?

PRP is produced from a person’s own blood. It is a concentrated injection of the platelets naturally found in the patient’s own blood. Platelets and the portion of the blood called serum, contain many factors that are essential for the cellular functions required for healing. After a blood sample is obtained, the blood is put into a centrifuge, separating the blood into its components. Platelet Rich Plasma (PRP) is then collected and delivered via injection into the joint. The Platelets in the PRP contain the natural growth factors needed to promote tissue healing and regeneration. The growth factors are released from the platelets after their injection into the body as a part of the ongoing cellular repair process. Helping sufferers of osteoarthritic conditions of Knees, hips, shoulders, elbow, ankles and more are mainstays of PRP treating practitioners.

Stem Cell Treatments/ Regenerative Medicine 

Advances in Regenerative Medicine have allowed patients to have access to the cutting edge technology of both BIO X STEM umbilical cord derived regenerative material, as well as ORGANICELL EXOSOMES. Stem Cells have been the subject of research for their effectiveness for a variety of disorders. One of the most widely practiced and recognized as effective treatment areas has been for osteoarthritis of various joints.  The conditions that stem cell therapy may be effective also  include disorders for which there are not at present, any recognized safe and effective medical treatments.

Finally, practitioners are achieving optimal results combining these methods as synergistic treatments utilized together which may compliment each other to afford both symptomatic relief and disease modifying treatments for osteoarthritis

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