According to a new report published in the Lancet Journal of Rheumatology, a backlog of surgical procedures in the UK has left nearly 100,000 arthritis patients suffering with prolonged pain and limited mobility due to cancelled or delayed joint replacement surgeries. As a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, the report states that those now waiting over a year for surgery are 100 times the number from 2019.
17 million people in the UK live with a musculoskeletal condition. Symptoms can range from mild aches to debilitating chronic joint pain, inflammation, stiffness and fatigue. The most common form is osteoarthritis which is caused by the gradual wear and tear of joint tissues, a condition for which third of the population aged over 45 have sought treatment.
With NHS resources still under strain, waiting lists continue to grow, having a profound impact on chronic pain management and quality of life. In fact, 60% of those waiting for knee replacement surgery are reported to be suffering with depression. A furthernew study has found that those left suffering with a quality of life deemed ‘worse than death’ has nearly doubled, a result of delayed joint replacement surgeries.
This news comes not long following a report by the healthcare regulatory body NICE, condemning commonly used painkillers, such as paracetamol and ibuprofen, as offering little to no evidence of relief from chronic pain, with potentially harmful side effects if taken long-term. Despite this, it is predicted that nearly half of chronic pain sufferers are dependent on paracetamol for the management of symptoms, leaving a short-fall in safe and sustainable options for their pain.
Forced to self-manage chronic pain for longer durations, and with increased perceptions of pain during the pandemic, patients will instead be looking for lifestyle changes and clinically backed supplements to help find long-term relief.
Consultant Rheumatologist Dr Rod Hughes comments: ‘Now the side effects of paracetamol are well documented it is imperative that we look at safer, long term alternatives for those living with joint pain. One such option could be the galactolipid GOPO, which has been shown in randomised, placebo-controlled clinical trials to significantly reduce arthritis joint pain and reduce consumption of paracetamol by 40%. In vitro studies have demonstrated GOPO has anti-inflammatory properties which have a protective effect on cartilage, potentially even helping cartilage and joint tissues to rebuild and regenerate. GOPO has been found to have a positive safety profile and is able to be taken long term.’
GOPO Joint Health is a powerful natural anti-inflammatory supplement made from 100% specially cultivated natural rose-hip, with a high level of the galactolipid GOPO.
Extensive scientific studies involving patients with chronic pain conditions, such as osteoarthritis, have shown that GOPO® enables significant and consistent pain relief and improved joint function, while helping to protect against the degeneration of cartilidge. In one study, 8 out of 10 patients reported a significant reduction in pain after just three weeks of GOPO.
Researchers have also concluded that GOPO may be more effective than regularly taking either paracetamol or glucosamine in terms of pain reduction in osteoarthritis.