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Evaluation of the effect of Elaeagnus angustifolia alone and combined with Boswellia thurifera compared with ibuprofen in patients with knee osteoarthritis: a randomized double-blind controlled clinical trial


Osteoarthritis (OA) is one of the most common articular disorders. Many patients do not respond to acetaminophen and non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDs), the mainstay of pharmacotherapy for knee OA. The plants Elaeagnus angustifolia and Boswellia thurifera have anti-inflammatory and analgesic properties. This study aimed to evaluate the effect of E. angustifolia alone and in combination with B. thurifera compared with ibuprofen in patients with knee osteoarthritis. In a randomized double-blind controlled clinical trial, 75 patients with knee OA were randomly and equally assigned to one of three groups Elaeagnus (n = 23), Elaeagnus/Boswellia (n = 26), and ibuprofen (n = 26) to receive the capsules of Elaeagnus, Elaeagnus/Boswellia, and ibuprofen, respectively, three times daily with meals for 4 weeks. Pain severity based on VAS (visual analog scale, 0 to 10 scale) and the scores of LPFI (Lequesne Pain and Function Index) and PGA (patient global assessment) were determined pre- and post-intervention for all patients. All interventions had significant lowering effects on VAS, LPFI, and PGA scores (P < 0.001 for all parameters) with no significant difference between groups in terms of effects on all evaluated parameters. Consumption of E. angustifolia fruit extract either alone or in combination with Boswellia oleo-gum resin extract could decrease pain and improve function in patients with knee osteoarthritis comparable to ibuprofen.

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This study was financially supported by Barij Essence Pharmaceutical Company, Kashan, Iran. The authors would like to acknowledge the staff of Barij Essence Company and Rheumatology Clinic of Alzahra Hospital for their assistance.

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Correspondence to Rasool Soltani.

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Karimifar, M., Soltani, R., Hajhashemi, V. et al. Evaluation of the effect of Elaeagnus angustifolia alone and combined with Boswellia thurifera compared with ibuprofen in patients with knee osteoarthritis: a randomized double-blind controlled clinical trial. Clin Rheumatol 36, 1849–1853 (2017).

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  • Boswellia thurifera
  • Clinical trial
  • Elaeagnus angustifolia
  • Ibuprofen
  • Knee osteoarthritis