Articles by Dr. Arnold

Articles by Dr. Arnold

Small RhombusHealth articles by Dr. Fred Arnold focus on prolotherapy, pain rehabilitation and natural healing.

Articles by Dr. Fred Arnold



Osteoarthritis (OA) also known as degenerative arthritis or degenerative joint disease (DJD), is a group of mechanical abnormalities involving a breakdown of joints including articular cartilage, ligaments and bone. Osteoarthritis will also affect the tendons that connect muscles to bone and allow for movement of the joint.

Arthritis is a leading cause of disability in the world and in the US, where it affects 43 million persons. OA is the most common form of arthritis and the most common joint disorder. In the US, symptomatic knee OA is present in up to 6% of the population over 30 years old, and has an overall incidence of 360,000 cases per year.

Osteoarthritis Traditional Treatments
Traditional treatment generally involves a combination of exercise, lifestyle modification, and a variety of pain medications including steroids. While these modalities may help some patients, none has proven to provide lasting pain control for patients with OA. If pain continues or worsens, joint replacement surgery may be recommended.

Collagen and Joints
Collagen is a protein the forms fibrous tissues such as cartilage, ligaments and tendons associated with a joint. The strength and integrity of any joint is dependent upon the body’s ability to manufacture collagen for strong joints and the ability to resist stress on the joint. Other fibrous tissues of the body that are rich in collagen include the skin, cornea, bone, blood vessel, the gut and intervertebral disc. The fibroblast is the most common cell which creates collagen.

Collagen and Vitamin C
Vitamin C does a lot of good things for the body. It prevents diseases like scurvy, can lower the risk of certain forms of heart disease, but perhaps one of its most important functions is its role in the production of collagen. Vitamin C helps our bodies produce collagen, which strengthens the connective tissue that forms our ligaments and tendons. When we're injured, our requirements for vitamin C seem to increase. If too little is consumed, this will negatively impact the healing process. Getting enough Vitamin C also helps limit further injury to damaged tissue and muscles.1

Vitamin C Production
The vast majority of animals produce their own vitamin C such as birds, fish, reptiles, amphibians and other mammals. For all these animals, Vitamin C plays an essential role in protecting them from infections, toxins and disease and allows them to enjoy a full and healthy life, eventually dying of old age. Rarely do any of these animals have strokes, heart attacks, cancer, or contract infectious diseases. And they do not spend their life in a chronically ill state. Unfortunately, humans do not share this ability to produce our own vitamin C. We belong to a select group of mammals, along with monkeys and the guinea pig, that cannot produce are own Vitamin C and must satisfy our needs through diet or supplementation.2 A study by the Cambridge University showed that “individuals with the highest levels of vitamin C had nearly half the death of those with the lowest levels – from all causes”.3

Vitamin C and Arthritis
Since as humans we are not able to manufacture our own Vitamin C and it is essential for the building of collagen and our overall health, it is critical we supplement adequate Vitamin C in are daily diet to treat and prevent arthritis. There are numerous studies that link low levels of Vitamin C to arthritis and at least one study with animals how high-dose Vitamin C reduces the inflammation, swelling and associated inflammatory of arthritic joints.4

Vitamin C Supplementation
Although there are many different forms of Vitamin C that are available on the market, I consider liposome-encapsulated Vitamin C as the best form for supplementation. Liposome Vitamin C allows for much lower doses to be consumed for maximum absorption in the body. One thousand (1,000) mg of liposomal Vitamin C is equal to taking three thousand (3,000) mg to four thousand (4,000) mg of powdered Vitamin C.

Regenerative Medicine and Vitamin C
Regenerative Medicine injections involving prolotherapy, prolozone and PRP are treatments to rebuild and strengthen osteoarthritic joints. Vitamin C provides the building material for the production of collagen and is essential for the formation of ligament, tendon and cartilage involving those joints.

Osteoarthritis is a very common condition that affects most of us as we age and numerous studies have linked low levels of Vitamin C to osteoarthritis. Since we are unable to manufacture our own Vitamin C for the production of collagen produced with regenerative medicine injections, supplementation should be a consideration for the prevention and treatment of osteoarthritis and overall health. Liposomal Vitamin C allows for maximal absorption compared to other forms of Vitamin C.

  1. Int J Cosmet Sci. 1998 Jun;20(3):151-8. doi: 10.1046/j.1467-2494.1998.171747.
  2. Osborn T. Gear J., “possible relation between ability to synthesize vitamin C and reaction to Tubercle bacillus” Nature 1940 145:974
  3. Nishikimi M, et al, “Occurance in humans and guinea pigs of the gene related to their missing enzume L-gulonalactone oxidase” Archives of Biochemistry and Biophysics 1988 267(2):842-846.
  4. Levy, Thomas E. MD, JD, Primal Panacea, MedFox Publishing, 2011, pg. 203.