The aim of the study was to evaluate the use of specific collagen peptides in reducing pain in athletes with functional knee problems during sport. Athletic subjects (n = 139) with functional knee pain ingested 5 g of bioactive collagen peptides (BCP) or a placebo per day for 12 weeks. The primary outcome of the study was a change in pain intensity during activity, which was evaluated by the participants and the attending physicians using a visual analogue scale (VAS). As secondary endpoints, pain intensity under resting conditions, the range of motion of the knee joint, and the use of additional therapeutic options were assessed. The results revealed a statistically significant improvement in activity-related pain intensity in the verum group compared with placebo. (ΔVASBCP = 19.5 ± 2.4; ΔVASPlacebo = 13.9 ± 2.1; p = 0.046). The results were confirmed by the physician's assessment. (ΔVASBCP = 16.7 ± 1.8; ΔVASPlacebo = 12.2 ± 1.8; p = 0.021). Pain under resting conditions was also improved, but no significance compared with placebo was detected (ΔVASBCP = 10.2 ± 18.4; ΔVASPlacebo= 7.4 ± 15.2; p = 0.209). Due to the high joint mobility at baseline, no significant changes of this parameter could be detected. The use of additional treatment options was significantly reduced after BCP intake. The study demonstrated that the supplementation of specific collagenpeptides in young adults with functional knee problems led to a statistically significant improvement of activity-related joint pain.
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