Collagen is a protein that is part of cartilage, bone, and other tissues in animals and humans. People use collagen from chickens for medicine.
Chicken collagen is used to treat joint pain associated with many types of arthritis and surgery, as well as back pain, neck pain, and pain following injury.
How does it work?
Chicken collagen is said to work by causing the body to produce substances that fight pain and swelling (inflammation), but this is unproven. Chicken collagen also contains the chemicals chondroitin and glucosamine, which might help rebuild cartilage.
- Osteoarthritis. Early research shows that taking a specific product (AR7 Joint Complex by Robinson Pharma) containing collagen type II, methylsulfonylmethane (MSM), cetyl myristoleate, lipase, vitamin C, turmeric, and bromelain by mouth for 12 weeks reduces joint pain and tenderness in people with osteoarthritis. However, it does not seem to improve X-rays of affected joints.
- Rheumatoid arthritis (RA). Research on the effects of collagen type II in people with RA shows conflicting results. Some research shows that taking collagen type II by mouth for 3 months reduces joint pain, swelling, and time to walk 15 meters in people with RA. However, other research does not show these improvements when collagen type II is taken for longer periods of time or in higher doses. Also, other research suggests that collagen type II is less effective than the drug methotrexate for treating RA.
- Pain associated with joint pain after surgery, pain after injury, and back and neck pain.
- Other conditions.
Side Effects & Safety
Collagen type II is POSSIBLY SAFE when taken by mouth in doses up to 2.5 mg daily for up to 24 weeks. It’s not clear what the side effects might be. Other collagen products, such as bovine collagen and gelatin, have caused allergic reactions. Since collagen type II contains chondroitin and glucosamine, large doses might lead to the same side effects as those seen with chondroitin and glucosamine supplements. These side effects include nausea, heartburn, diarrhea and constipation, drowsiness, skin reactions, and headache.
Special Precautions & Warnings:Pregnancy and breast-feeding: There is not enough reliable information about the safety of taking collagen type II if you are pregnant or breast-feeding. Stay on the safe side and avoid use.
Egg or chicken allergies: People who are allergic to chicken or eggs should not use collagen type II. Collagen products have been associated with allergic reactions.
The appropriate dose of collagen type II depends on several factors such as the user's age, health, and several other conditions. At this time there is not enough scientific information to determine an appropriate range of doses for collagen type II. Keep in mind that natural products are not always necessarily safe and dosages can be important. Be sure to follow relevant directions on product labels and consult your pharmacist or physician or other healthcare professional before using.