Standardized curcumin as effective as NSAIDs in managing osteoarthritis symptoms, according to recent study


Subjects taking standardized curcumin formulation BCM-95 showed similar improvements as subjects taking NSAIDs, with significantly few adverse events.


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A randomized, open-label, parallel-arm study recently published in Trials shows that BCM-95, a standardized curcumin formulation from Arjuna Natural Ltd., was comparable to NSAIDS in managing osteoarthritis symptoms, with fewer adverse events. In the study, 139 subjects with knee osteoarthritis were randomized to receive either 500 mg of BCM-95 three times daily or 50 mg of diclofenac, an NSAID, twice daily for 28 days.

Subjects were assessed at baseline, 7, 14, and 28 days. Results showed that improvements in the severity of pain using visual analogue scale score as well as Knee Injury and Osteoarthritis Outcome Score at days 14 and 28 were similar in both the curcumin and NSAID groups, reducing pain, relieving joint stiffness, and improving the daily functions of living. The curcumin group, however, did see a significantly higher reduction in the number of episodes of flatulence compared with diclofenac, and overall, the curcumin group had significantly less adverse effects (13% versus 38% in the diclofenac group).

“BCM-95 curcumin could be a favorable alternative for people seeking relief from OA symptoms, especially those who are intolerant to the side effects of standard OTC drugs,” says Benny Antony, PhD, joint managing director of Arjuna, in a press release. “The beneficial results obtained in the study are highly likely due to the combination of curcuminoids and essential oil of turmeric present in our proprietary curcumin formulation with increased curcumin bioavailability. The permeability of curcumin is increased by the turmerone-rich essential oil complex, incurring a sevenfold enhancement of plasma curcumin levels, proven to yield statistically significant clinical benefits.”


1. D. Shep, et al. “Safety and efficacy of curcumin versus diclofenac in knee osteoarthritis: a randomized open-label parallel-arm study.” Trials, vol. 20 (2019): 214

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