Scientists have ranked the five most effective, non-surgical treatments for knee osteoarthritis (OA).
For pain reduction, cortisone injections provide the most effective short-term relief, followed by ibuprofen, platelet-rich plasma (PRP) injections, and the non-steroid anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) naproxen and celecoxib, a US study found.
Yet, naproxen is the best overall remedy to both improve joint function and minimise discomfort, the research adds.
Hyaluronic acid (HA) injections appear to be relatively ineffective at relieving pain or boosting knee function, with 12 out of 53 studies finding such therapies are no better than placebo, the study found.
The researchers believe their findings support the use of naproxen as a first-line drug-based treatment for knee OA.
Previous research also suggests naproxen causes less heart attacks and strokes than other drugs of its class.
Around 45 percent of people in the US develop OA at some point in their lives. OA is caused by the cartilage at the ends of bones breaking down over time.
2 May 2018