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Recent reports, from The Netherlands1 and the UK,2 suggest that statins have a modifying role in osteoarthritis (OA) using different outcome definitions, specifically radiographic OA in the Rotterdam cohort and general practitioner diagnosis from a national database in the UK study. On the other hand, a large longitudinal study from the USA found that statin use was not associated with improvements in knee pain, function or structural progression over a 4-year period.3 A separate US longitudinal study in elderly women found that statin use may be associated with an increased risk of developing incident radiographic hip OA.4 The discrepancies between published studies on statins and OA may be due to methodological factors as has been discussed elsewhere.5
Studies of generalised OA suggest the potential role of systemic processes in disease pathogenesis.6 It has been hypothesised, based on evidence from in vitro studies, that …
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