Paracetamol does nothing to improve arthritis pain

A recent study has revealed that paracetamol could be useless at treating arthritis pain, regardless of the dose. According to

A recent study has revealed that paracetamol could be useless at treating arthritis pain, regardless of the dose.

According to research conducted with the Swiss National Science Foundation, paracetamol does not improve pain much more than placebo pills would.

“We see no role for single-agent paracetamol for the treatment of patients with osteoarthritis irrespective of dose”, the researchers noted.

Their work compared 74 clinical trials which encompassed nearly 60,000 arthritis patients. Different methods of pain management were compared.

Instead of paracetamols, the researchers determined that non steroidal anti-inflammatory medications (NSAIDs) are most effective in treating arthritis pain.

“(Dosages of) 150 mg / day is the most effective NSAID available at present, in terms of improving both pain and function”, the research team noted.

“Physicians need to consider our results together with all known safety information when selecting the preparation and dose for individual patients”, they advised.

In fact, there has long been a debate about whether paracetamol and other over-the-counter medications can treat painful arthritis symptoms.

“I’ve been suffering for years!”, said one arthritis patient who uses paracetamol without success. “It’s useless!”

Whilst another commented online, “Any arthritis suffered will tell you paracetamol doesn’t work. Anti-inflammatory drugs help, or coriander leaves and cherries help too”.

Arthritis is the major cause of disability and chronic pain in Australia, with 3.85 million people living with this often debilitating condition.

Are you living with arthritis? Does somebody you know suffer from arthritis symptoms? How do they manage chronic pain?

  1. Without a doubt the most effective things I have found for my arthritis in terms of pain reduction & inflammation reduction are: green lipped mussel extract, turmeric (you can buy a combination of these two in one pill) and boron/boric acid. I take these every day and include a LOT of turmeric every day in my meals with ground black pepper & a bit of oil to help release the active ingredients. I no longer need any pain killers unless I have been overusing my hands or climbing too many mountains (hiking poles are a great ‘knee & hip saver’ for this activity). On the rare occasions I feel my fingers are swelling a magnesium spray massage helps enormously.

  2. Yes, I suffer from psoriatic arthritis. I had been living in Thailand for seven years and during the last two years I experienced pains in my shoulder and arms etc.I put it down to ageing and perhaps over excercising. A few months after coming back to NZ, the pain became more intense and there was developing stiffness especially in my fingers to the point in no way could I make a fist. I could not sit and drive for more than 40km without pain. I wore gloves on my hands to hold the steering wheel (summertime!!) I had a massive swelling in my left knee. My doctor did not give me much in the way of medication and in the end I “demanded” he refer me to a specialist. I had to travel over 100km to the specialist and that was agonising. He was brilliant and after a lot of poking, prodding, bending, twisitng, x-rays, questioning, he diagnosed my condition and began me on a course of methotrexate, quite an aggressive drug for certain individuals and supported by other medication in line with the methotrexate. It took six months for the drug to really kick in as the dosage was gradual and eventually after around three years I felt I was in remission, a new person. I now take sulphasalazine and the support medication and I am fine. I have the odd twinge but it is nothing because intitially I could see myself in a wheelchair. Pay the money and go to a specialist!

  3. Dianne  

    My husband takes fish oil every day and thinks that helps him

  4. Joy Anne Bourke  

    Yes I live with arthritis. Shocking thing to have. I have it in my hands, back, hips and in colder months it is worst. I have medication for other issues and being a pensioner cannot afford or have generic medications or over the counter products. My doctor describes what I need and can’t remember at the moment.

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