Woo T, Lau L, Cheng N, Chan P, Tan K and Gardner A
Introduction: Joint pain is one of the most common types of chronic pain. Osteoarthritis (OA) and rheumatoid arthritis (RA) are the two leading causes of joint pain and there are currently no prophylactic or curative treatments available. Oral collagen has been implicated in providing a potential means to treat arthritis. This review article aims to identify, evaluate and summarize the results of published animal and human clinical trials related to oral collagen in the treatment of joint pain caused by OA and RA.
Methodology: Articles were searched using EMBASE and Medline databases. Search terms for keywords and titles included: “osteoarthritis”, “rheumatoid arthritis”, “joint pain”, “oral collagen”. Articles containing the following are included in our search: randomized controlled trials, clinical evidence and animal models containing primary quantitative data, in vitro studies of oral collagen related with joint pain, joint disease, OA or RA.
Results: Numerous preclinical and clinical studies have been carried out to investigate the efficacy of oral collagen and both OA and RA. Oral collagen is administered either in an undenatured form or in a partially denatured form for patients with OA, and in general, has been found to be reasonably efficacious, although more trials will be required to confirm and consolidate these findings. In contrast, oral collagen has a more debatable response rate in patients with RA, especially when compared with methotrexate, an existing therapy.
Conclusion: There is some evidence that suggests oral collagen is effective for OA and has shown to be tolerable and safe for the patient. The clinical efficacy of oral collagen in RA remains controversial, particularly when compared with conventional therapies such as methotrexate.