Medication | antidepressants for knee oa

Medication | antidepressants for knee oa


Antidepressants for osteoarthritis? Next
Study Will Assess Antidepressant for Treating Knee Osteoarthritis Bill Schu writing for MD reported a New Zealand
study announced in Trials will examine whether the antidepressant nortriptyline can safely
and effectively treat knee osteoarthritis (OA). The medication is inexpensive and readily
available, and it is well-tolerated in patients treated for depression. Because knee OA has no known cure, pharmacologic
interventions are focused on pain relief and promotion of function. Initial management
consists of patient education, exercise and weight loss, but many patients also require
analgesics typically in the form of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs) or opioids. NSAIDS are well known to reduce pain, but
they also significantly increase the risk of gastrointestinal ulceration and bleeding,
and are associated with cardiovascular events. Thus, their long-term use is contraindicated
in many patients. Opioids, in some studies, have been no more effective than placebo for
knee OA patients. Recent trials of the serotonin and noradrenalin
reuptake inhibitors (SNRIs) venlafaxine and duloxetine have shown statistically and clinically
significant reductions in pain in patients with OA. Comment: This certainly reduces the pill burden
for patients who have both osteoarthritis and depression.

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