The Effects of a Standardized Herbal Remedy Made from a Subtype of Rosa canina in Patients with Osteoarthritis: A Double-Blind, Randomized, Placebo-Controlled Clinical Trial

Curr Ther Res Clin Exp. 2003 Jan;64(1):21-31. doi: 10.1016/S0011-393X(03)00004-3.


Background: A standardized rose-hip powder produced from the seeds and husks of fruit from a subtype of Rosa canina has been reported to inhibit leukocyte functions that cause cell injury in osteoarthritis.

Objective: The aim of this study was to assess the impact of standardized rose-hip powder on mobility of the hip and knee joints, activities of daily living, quality of life, and pain in patients with osteoarthritis.

Methods: Patients with a diagnosis of osteoarthritis of either the hip or knee, verified on radiography, participated in this randomized, placebo-controlled, double-blind study. Half of the patients were given five 0.5-g capsules of standardized rose-hip powder twice daily for 4 months, and the other half received identical placebo capsules twice daily for the same period. Mobility of the hip or knee was measured in both groups after the initial screening and again after 4 months of therapy.

Results: One hundred patients (65 women, 35 men; mean [SD] age, 65.2 [11.1] years) were divided into 2 treatment groups of 50 patients each. Hip joint mobility improved significantly in the treatment group compared with the placebo group (P = 0.033). Similarly, pain decreased significantly in the treatment group compared with the placebo group (P = 0.035). Two patients (4%) from each group withdrew during the early stages of the trial for reasons not related to treatment.

Conclusions: In this study population, standardized rose-hip powder reduced symptoms of osteoarthritis, as 64.6% of patients reported at least some reduction of pain while receiving treatment. Standardized rose-hip powder may improve hip flexion and reduce pain in patients with osteoarthritis.

Keywords: Rosa canina; osteoarthritis; pain; rose-hip powder; stiffness.