Objective: To evaluate the efficacy of S-adenosyl l-methionine (SAMe) in the treatment of clinically inferred canine osteoarthritis (OA). Study Design: Six weeks, double-blinded, placebo-controlled, clinical trial. Animals: Dogs (n=33) with clinical signs, history, and orthopedic exams consistent with OA. Methods: Dogs were block randomized by body condition score (<6/9, or ≥6/9) into either the placebo or SAMe group. Outcome was assessed using pressure platform gait analysis, examination score, goniometry, and the Canine Brief Pain Inventory (CBPI) at the time of study entrance and at 3 and 6 weeks after entry. Groups were compared using parametric and nonparametric paired tests as appropriate, and numbers needed to treat (NNT) were calculated for the CBPI and peak vertical force (PVF). Results: Both groups (n=15 placebo, n=18 SAMe) had a reduction in mean PVF (P=.02) and vertical impulse (VI; P=.06) from the 1st to 3rd visit. There was no significant difference between the placebo group and SAMe group for PVF, VI, or either part of the CBPI (Severity or Impact). The NNT at 6 weeks for the Severity score was 3, Impact score was 25, and PVF was 45. Conclusions: These data do not support the use of SAMe as an effective stand alone treatment for reducing clinical signs of OA, as measured by PVF, VI, goniometry, CBPI (both Severity and Impact), and examination score within 6 weeks of treatment.
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