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chondroitin and glucosamine

Pronunciation

Generic Name: chondroitin and glucosamine (kon DROI tin and gloo KOE sa meen)
Brand Name: Chondroitin-Glucosamine, Cidaflex, Cosamin DS, Glucoten, OptiFlex Complete, Osteo Bi-Flex, Osteo Bi-Flex Double Strength, Osteo Bi-Flex Triple Strength, Pryflex, Relamine, Schiff Move Free, Schiff Move Free Caplets

What is chondroitin and glucosamine?

Chondroitin is a naturally occurring substance formed of sugar chains. Chondroitin is believed to help the body maintain fluid and flexibility in the joints.

Glucosamine is sugar protein that is believed to help develop and renew cartilage (the hard connective tissue mainly located on bones near joints in the body), and keep it lubricated for better joint movement and flexibility.

The combination of chondroitin and glucosamine is used to aid in maintaining healthy joints. It is also used as a nutritional supplement in people with osteoarthritis or other inflammatory joint disorders.

Not all uses for chondroitin and glucosamine have been approved by the FDA. Chondroitin and glucosamine should not be substituted for medications prescribed for you by your doctor.

Chondroitin and glucosamine is often sold as an herbal supplement. There are no regulated manufacturing standards in place for many herbal compounds and some marketed supplements have been found to be contaminated with toxic metals or other drugs. Herbal/health supplements should be purchased from a reliable source to minimize the risk of contamination.

Chondroitin and glucosamine may also be used for purposes not listed in this medication guide.

What is the most important information I should know about chondroitin and glucosamine?

Not all uses for chondroitin and glucosamine have been approved by the FDA. Chondroitin and glucosamine should not be substituted for medications prescribed for you by your doctor.

Chondroitin and glucosamine is often sold as an herbal supplement. There are no regulated manufacturing standards in place for many herbal compounds and some marketed supplements have been found to be contaminated with toxic metals or other drugs. Herbal/health supplements should be purchased from a reliable source to minimize the risk of contamination.

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Before using chondroitin and glucosamine, talk to your doctor, pharmacist, herbalist, or other healthcare provider. You may not be able to use chondroitin and glucosamine if you have diabetes, a bleeding or blood clotting disorder such as hemophilia, if you have allergies to certain drugs, if you are overweight, or if you are on a low-salt diet.

Use chondroitin and glucosamine as directed on the label, or as your healthcare provider has prescribed. Do not use this product in larger amounts or for longer than recommended.

Do not take chondroitin and glucosamine without the advice of a healthcare provider if you are using insulin, or a blood thinner such as warfarin (Coumadin).

Avoid taking chitosan (usually marketed as a weight-loss product) while you are taking chondroitin and glucosamine. Chitosan can make it harder for your body to absorb chondroitin.

What should I tell my healthcare provider before taking chondroitin and glucosamine?

Before using this product, talk to your doctor, pharmacist, herbalist, or other healthcare provider. You may not be able to use chondroitin and glucosamine if you have:

  • diabetes;

  • a bleeding or blood clotting disorder such as hemophilia;

  • if you have allergies to certain drugs;

  • if you are overweight; or

  • if you are on a low-salt diet.

It is not known whether chondroitin and glucosamine will harm an unborn baby. Do not use this product without medical advice if you are pregnant.

It is not known whether chondroitin and glucosamine passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use this product without medical advice if you are breast-feeding a baby.

How should I take chondroitin and glucosamine?

When considering the use of herbal supplements, seek the advice of your doctor. You may also consider consulting a practitioner who is trained in the use of herbal/health supplements.

If you choose to take chondroitin and glucosamine, use it as directed on the package or as directed by your doctor, pharmacist, or other healthcare provider. Do not use more of this product than is recommended on the label.

Chondroitin and glucosamine is usually taken 1 or 2 times per day. You may need to take the medication 3 times per day for the first couple of months of treatment. Follow your doctor's instructions.

Glucosamine may increase the glucose (sugar) levels in your blood. If you have diabetes, you may need to check your blood sugar more often while taking this medication. You may also need to adjust your insulin dosage. Do not change your dose or insulin schedule without advice from your doctor.

Chondroitin and glucosamine may be only part of a complete program of treatment that also includes diet, exercise, and weight control. Follow your diet, medication, and exercise routines very closely.

Store at room temperature away from moisture, heat, and light.

What happens if I miss a dose?

Skip the missed dose if it is almost time for your next scheduled dose. Do not use extra chondroitin and glucosamine to make up the missed dose.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222.

What should I avoid while taking chondroitin and glucosamine?

Avoid taking chitosan (usually marketed as a weight-loss product) while you are taking chondroitin and glucosamine. Chitosan can make it harder for your body to absorb chondroitin.

Chondroitin and glucosamine side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have any of these signs of an allergic reaction: hives; difficulty breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Less serious side effects may include:

  • mild nausea, upset stomach;

  • heartburn; or

  • diarrhea.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

See also: Side effects (in more detail)

What other drugs will affect chondroitin and glucosamine?

Do not take chondroitin and glucosamine without medical advice if you are using any of the following medications:

  • insulin; or

  • a blood thinner such as warfarin (Coumadin, Jantoven).

This list is not complete and other drugs may interact with chondroitin and glucosamine. Tell your doctor about all medications you use. This includes prescription, over-the-counter, vitamin, and herbal products. Do not start a new medication without telling your doctor.

Where can I get more information?

  • Consult with a licensed healthcare professional before using any herbal/health supplement. Whether you are treated by a medical doctor or a practitioner trained in the use of natural medicines/supplements, make sure all your healthcare providers know about all of your medical conditions and treatments.
  • Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use this medication only for the indication prescribed.
  • Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.

Copyright 1996-2012 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 1.08. Revision Date: 2012-07-05, 10:04:42 AM.

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