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The external use of shungite paste Shungirim for the patients with osteoarthrosis of different localization

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The external use of shungite paste Shungirim for the patients with osteoarthrosis of different localization

By S. V. Shirinkin

Krasivo Health Resort, Belgorod (Russia)

Krasivo Health Resort Belgorod

            Osteoarthrosis (OA) is a disease based on the degeneration and destruction of articular cartilage with subsequent proliferation of underlying bone resulting into the joint deformity and dysfunction. It mostly affects 40-60 year old women; however, significant "rejuvenation" of the disease is observed recently. The expressed symptoms of OA are observed in the people at the age of 35-45. On the other hand, the morbidity rate of OA is increasing increases among males (Gogin, 1991; Okorokov, 1997; Chirkin etc., 1993).

            The development of medical nanotechnology, including the use of fulereno-type schungite carbon (FSC) in the treatment of OA provides new opportunities for the treatment and prevention of this pathology.

            The following effects of FSC are known so far: antibacterial (Krutous, 2002; Rysyev, 2002; Khadartsev and others, 2005), antiviral (Khadartsev, 2005), immune stimulating in the absence of stimulation of Ig E response (Khadartsev, 2005), anticancer (Khadartsev, 2005), anti-inflammatory/ antioxidant (lipid peroxidation blockade) (Krutous, 2002; Rysyev and others 2002), antihistamine (Rysyev and others, 2002), ionizing and non-ionizing radiation screening (Subbotina and others, 2003).

            The purpose of this study is to determine the effectiveness of the external use of schungite paste Shungirim in the patients with OA of different localization.

The study was conducted at Krasivo Health Resort (Belgorod, Russia).

            The study involved 254 patients (153 women and 101 men) at the average age of 44.7 with a significant OA of the knee and hip joints and the average disease duration of 7.4 years. 87 of them received monotherapy with the use of schungite paste (5-7 manipulations), 92 people got the ozocerite treatment (8 manipulations) and 73 people had the combined physical therapy (laser-magnetic + pine-sea baths: 8 manipulations per patient).

            A two-lateral process occurred in 165 cases (64.9%), unilateral – in 89 (35.0%). OA stage was determined by radiological method outpatiently according to Kellgren-Lawrence classification. The 1 class joint changes were revealed in 151 cases (59.4%), the 2 class changes – in 49 cases (19.3%), the third class changes – in 18 cases (7.0 %). The structural analysis showed approximately equal correlation between the studied groups of patients with different severity of the disease. Densitometry was applied for specific indications at the health resort. Osteopenia was diagnosed in 43 cases (16.9%), osteoporosis – in 14 cases (5.5%).

Synovitis was diagnosed in 4 cases (1.5%).

            The painful articular syndrome intensity was assessed by visual analogue scale (VAS); the joint dysfunction was evaluated by Leken index. Special attention was given to the chance of the schungite paste treatment side effects occurence.

            Shungite paste was applied in smooth thin layer on the affected joint area (the polyethylene was applied atop) for 2-3 hours a day, 5-6 applications per joint. It is worth mentioning that patients received no other treatments during the period of the use of the paste except for the cases of synovitis complications of the articular process.

            In these cases, hirudotherapy (2-3 sessions), magnet therapy (4-5 sessions) and the addition of anti-inflammatory drugs (diclofenac, Nise) were used to prepare the joints for shungite therapy. After synovitis reduction, the sparing shungite paste treatment was prescribed, according to which the application duration made 30-60 minutes.

            The control group consisted of 48 patients suffering from this disease that did not receive physical therapy through some contraindications (tumor diseases in anamnesis).

            The statistical analysis included collection of descriptive data such as the average and standard divergence, confidence intervals. The comparative analysis was conducted with the application of Student t-test number (Kashin, 1994).

Treatment results and their discussion.

            In the course of comparative analysis it was found that the pain acuteness decreased (see the chart) and the joint function significantly improved after the first shungite paste application to the patients with degenerative disc disease ( VAS 6.3±0.354.4±0.36;  Leken index 10.1±0.39-7.7±0.38), whereas the results were different for Ozocerite treatment (5.2±0.25-4.9±0.35; Leken index 8.8±0.33-8.3±0.35) and combined physiotherapy (6.2±0.32 -5.8±0.37; Leken index of 9.7±0.35-9.0±0.35). By the end of the course, significant pain relief and joint function improvement was found in all 3 treatment groups (VAS 6.3±0.35-1.5±0.11; 5.2±0.252.2±0.15; 6.2±0.32-2.5±0.19; Leken index 10.1±0.39-5.3±0.26; 8.8±0.33-6.2±0.36; 9.7±0.35-6.5±0.29); however, pain relief and joint function improvement were more evident in the group of patients that received shungite treatment and that was differed from the other two treatment groups (VAS 1.5±0.11/ 2.2±0.15-3.1±0.19; Leken index 5.3±0.26/ 6.2±0.36-6.5±0.29) between which (2.2±0.15/ 2.5±0.19; Leken index 6.2±0.36-6.5±0.29) no difference was found in this data.


            The effectiveness of OA treatment assessed by VAS and Leken index, depending on the selected method of therapy:

The treatment effectiveness criterion

Shungirim Paste (n=87)

Ozocerite treatment (n=92)

Combined therapy (n=75)

Control group (n=48)

VAS before the treatment





VAS after the 1st treatment session





VAS after the treatment





Leken index before the treatment





Leken index after the 1st session





Leken index after the treatment





            Note: the uppercase asterisk means the difference between the corresponding VAS and Leken indicators before and after the treatment (R < 0.05) inside the groups as well as between VAS and Leken indicators for patients after shungite therapy and corresponding data for the other two groups of patients that received other types of physiotherapy treatment.

            In 2 cases (0.78 %), the skin irritation developed in the shungite application areas which required the temporary therapy method abandoning in combination with antihistamine therapy. Another mud therapy prescription for the damaged area for the shorter time (30-45 min) did not result into the irritation recurrence and the therapeutic effect remained the same. In 3 cases (1.2 %), the shungite mud treatment gave no clinical effect.

            We found no reliable clinical improvement in the control group (VAS 5.4±0.37-5.1±0.35; Leken index of 7.2±0.15-7.1±0.16).

            Thus, the use of shungite paste for OA proved to be safe and effective treatment which is characterized by earlier and more evident clinical effect as compared to ozocerite and combined therapy. All these factors let us consider shungite paste to be an effective treatment for OA of different localization and recommend to include it in the therapy and rehabilitation program for the patients with such a pathology.


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