Science-Based Osteoarthritis Treatment Guidelines

Voltaren is over-the-counter in the U.S.

Here’s a link to a long, boring scientific article on the non-surgical treatment of knee, hip, and multiple-joint osteoarthritis, aka degenerative joint disease (DJD).

My main reason for posting this is that I thought that topical capsaicin cream was proven as effecting in relieving pain. According to the article a hand, it is not. The authors don’t recommend it. It may work for some folks. BTW, do not let any of it get into your eye like I did! Wash your hands well after use.

I tried it anyway

From my reading elsewhere (link to NEJM), topical NSAIDs are recommended over systemic use. NSAID = non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drug. I picked up a tube of Voltaren (diclofenac) recently to try on my knee. I must say I was disappointed to read on the box that application four times daily for a couple weeks may be necessary before you feel relief. That seemed like too much hassle so I didn’t give it a fair trial. Guess I wasn’t hurting enough. I diagnosed my acute pain later as pes anserinus pain syndrome anyway, not DJD.

Steve Parker, M.D.

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