Methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) is another dietary supplement that is taken for the treatment of joint pain from arthritis. Its benefits for patients with osteoarthritis were investigated in a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial with 50 men and women (40-76 years old) with pain from osteoarthritis of the knee who were enrolled in an outpatient medical center . The patients received MSM 3 g or placebo twice each day (6 g/d) for 12 weeks. The outcomes included the Western Ontario and McMaster University Osteoarthritis Index visual analog scale (WOMAC), patient and physician global assessments, and SF-36 (an overall health-related quality-of-life measurement).
The investigators reported that MSM resulted in significantly decreased WOMAC pain and physical function impairment (P < .05) compared with placebo, but no notable changes were found in WOMAC stiffness and aggregated total symptom scores . MSM also produced improvement in performing activities of daily living compared with placebo on the SF-36 evaluation (P< .05). They concluded that MSM (3 g twice a day) improved symptoms of pain and physical function during a short intervention without major adverse events, although the long-term benefits and safety in managing osteoarthritis could not be confirmed by this pilot trial .
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