Glucosamine for knee osteoarthritis--what's new?

Drug Ther Bull. 2008 Nov;46(11):81-4. doi: 10.1136/dtb.2008.10.0025.


Glucosamine is a natural substance that has been widely used for several years as a food supplement to treat people with osteoarthritis.1 One formulation of black triangle downglucosamine hydrochloride (Alateris - Ransom) has recently become the first (and is currently the only) glucosamine product to be licensed as a medicine in the UK for symptomatic relief of mild to moderate osteoarthritis of the knee. In 2002, we concluded that unlicensed "oral glucosamine sulphate 1,500 mg [daily] probably provides modest symptom relief in patients with osteoarthritis of the knee and its efficacy appears similar to that of NSAIDs".1 Here we update our advice in the light of new evidence and assess the place of the licensed glucosamine hydrochloride tablets.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Antirheumatic Agents / therapeutic use*
  • Glucosamine / adverse effects
  • Glucosamine / therapeutic use*
  • Humans
  • Osteoarthritis, Knee / drug therapy*
  • Randomized Controlled Trials as Topic


  • Antirheumatic Agents
  • Glucosamine