Oscon is a “natural” supplement that is marketed for Severs disease (calcaneal apophysitis) and other similar osteochondroses such as Osgood-Schlatters disease. ‘Oscon’ is claimed as a trademark on the Oscon website, but it can not be found registered at the United States Patent and Trademark Office. The business is run by Gary Nelson from Pediatric Sports Physical Therapy in Newbury Park, California, USA.
The product contains RRR-a-Tocopherol (which is an isomer of vitamin E); and SelenoExcell (which is a trademarked combination of several organic selenium compounds). The product is claimed to work due to the anti-inflammatory properties of the vitamin E, but the role and amount of inflammation, if there is any, in Severs disease is not known. No evidence on the clinical efficacy of Oscon or the vitamin E and selenium supplementation to treat Severs disease is available.
- Oscon has been on the market since at least 2005, but there still no clinical trial on its efficacy compared to placebo or the natural history of Severs disease.
- The website does claim: “The normal course of events with Osgood-Schlatter, Severs Disease or Ischial Apophysitis is for a noticeable reduction in pain in 5 days, a major improvement in two weeks, and a full recovery in 30-60 days in over 90% of cases in adolescents. It can be quicker, or in some rare cases take longer.” A claim of this nature really should be supported by published and peer reviewed evidence, of which there is none.
- The marketing of the product is mostly by testimonials (and there are a lot of them) and the use of the natural fallacy.
- Consumer forums threads and blog comments that discuss the use of Oscon for Severs is almost always by those that are using other interventions concurrently with the Oscon, so was it the natural history, the placebo effect, the other treatments used or Oscon that actually helped? Without clinical trial data it is not possible to ascertain this from testimonials and consumer feedback or commentary.
- Severs is a mechanical problem, so is generally going to need mechanical interventions and not dietary supplements to manage.
Purchasing Oscon Tablets:
Oscon is available from the company’s website in the USA without prescription as a tablet with a 30 day supply (60 tablets) costing USD$26.95. The dose of two tablets a day are well within the safe limits of the ingredients in children as established by the National Institute of Health.
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