Diabetes drug metformin may reduce risk of knee osteoarthritis progression
Metformin has been linked to a reduced rate of cartilage loss that may, in turn, reduce the risk for total knee replacement in people with osteoarthritis who are obese, says a study in Arthritis Research & Therapy.
“We found that metformin users had about half the rate of knee cartilage loss compared to those who did not use metformin,” Dr Yuanyuan Wang, one of the research team, explains. “Slowing of knee cartilage loss is associated with less knee pain and lower risk of knee replacement surgery.
“Our results will need to be confirmed in randomized controlled trials, however, it builds on previous work suggesting many different disease pathways in knee osteoarthritis. A patient with osteoarthritis can take away the message that targeting metabolic and inflammatory pathways associated with obesity looks like a promising approach to slowing the progression of this disease and improving patient outcomes.”
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