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Byron Shire
June 1, 2023

Looking for men with osteoarthritis of the knee

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Arthritis is the most frequent cause of disability among adults in the developed world. Photo supplied

Pain from arthritis can be debilitating and ‘is the most frequent cause of disability among adults in the developed world,’ says Professor Stephen Myers from Southern Cross University (SCU).

As the population continues to age the prevalence of the condition will significantly increase according to Professor Meyers who is leading a study into the effect of a specific marine oil in both men and women with osteoarthritis. Southern Cross University’s NatMed-Research Unit is currently looking for male volunteers with osteoarthritis of the knee to participate in a research study.

‘Current standard clinical practice is to use non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS), but these have a high side effect profile. The goal of our research into osteoarthritis is to find a treatment that provides a safer, but equally effective, alternative,’ explained Professor Meyers.

According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) 2017–18 National Health Survey an estimated 2.2 million (9.3 per cent) Australians have osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis can affect people at any age, with the percentage of the population increasing sharply from the age of 45 years. Currently 22 per cent over of the population over the age of 45 have osteoarthritis and it affects over one-third (36 per cent) of people over 75 years.

‘In our preliminary studies we demonstrated that a standardised marine oil extract derived from New Zealand green-lipped mussels can substantively reduce the symptoms of osteoarthritis which confirms the results of work carried out overseas,’ Professor Myers said.

25 men needed

The researchers are looking for 25 men (45 to 75 years of age) with osteoarthritis of the knee from the Northern Rivers region to participate in the trial.

‘This follow-up study is designed to evaluate the effectiveness of a blend of two different marine oils in men with osteoarthritis. In a laboratory study the blend was shown to be more effective than either of the marine oils alone.’

Participants will attend clinical appointments at the University’s Lismore campus. The research is funded by Pharmalink International Pty Ltd and is being conducted independently by Southern Cross University. The study has been approved by the Southern Cross University Human Research Ethics Committee (ECN-2021-045).

If you experience moderate levels of pain due to osteoarthritis of the knee and would like to know more about the study, contact the study coordinator Shelley Robinson at: [email protected] or phone 0419 098 018.

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