NEW OARSI Guidelines for Osteoarthritis

April 24,2018

Macquarie Stem Cells has provided this information to educate the public based on peer reviewed, published scientific and medical documents. We don’t aim to encourage consumers to seek out such treatments prior to an assessment by a health professional to determine your suitability for treatment. This is obtained directly from Osteoarthritis Research Society International. We aim to provide you with an unbiased range of treatments that are available aside from biological therapy, this is discussed in ‘supporting information>other-options’  page on our website.

Published Online: Osteoarthritis Research Society International – 2017

The new guidelines recommend a set of non-pharmacological core treatments as appropriate for all individuals, these are listed below.

  • Land & Water based exercises
  • Strength Training
  • Self Education
  • Weight Management – the OARSI guidelines make a specific recommendation of achieving a 5% weight loss within a 20-week period to be effective at treating knee OA. (1)


  • Topical NSAIDs (anti-inflammatory creams) are recommended as appropriate for all patients with knee-only OA and in a scientific review, were found overall to be safer and better tolerated compared to oral NSAIDs (anti-inflammatory tables). (1)
  • Due to increased safety concerns about toxicity, acetaminophen/paracetamol was given an “uncertain” recommendation for all patients with comorbidities. (1)
  • Oral and transdermal opioid painkillers were given an “uncertain”recommendation for all patient groups due to concerns about increased risks for adverse and serious adverse events. (1)
  • Glucosamine and chondroitin were both found to be “not appropriate” for all patients when used for disease modification and “uncertain” for all patients when used for symptom relief. (1)


  • Balneotherapy, defined as using baths containing thermal mineral waters, was evaluated for the first time and found to be an appropriate therapy for patients with multi-joint OA and comorbidities, as this group has few other treatment options. (1)
  • The prescription drug duloxetine was evaluated for the first time and found to be an appropriate treatment for knee-only OA patients without comorbidities and all multi-joint OA patients. (1)

Additionally to the OARSI Guidelines

Biological Treatments are showing significant growth. Based on the current 2017 literature review by Dr. Pak,  Biological Treatments “have a great clinical potential to treat various orthopedic disorders as seen in human studies. This may be worthwhile to try in individuals for whom medical treatment has failed and for whom surgical options are not available”.
(Pak J. et al, 2017.) (2)

If you would like to learn more about these biological treatment options, please click here.

1. REF: Osteoarthritis Research Society International. (2017). OARSI Guidelines. [online] Available at: https://www.oarsi.org/education/oarsi-guidelines [Accessed 22 Sep. 2017].

2. REF: Pak, J., Lee, J., Park, K., Park, M., Kang, L. and Lee, S. (2017). Current use of autologous adipose tissue-derived stromal vascular fraction cells for orthopedic applications. Journal of Biomedical Science, 24(1).

Tags: Macquarie Stem Cells, Dr. Bright, Osteoarthritis Treatment, Dr. Ralph Bright, biological treatments for arthritis, OARSI guidelines, arthritis guidelines, new treatment for arthritis


Remember, any surgical or invasive procedure carries risks. Before proceeding, you should seek a second opinion from an appropriately qualified health practitioner.

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