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Drugs and Health Products

Monograph: MSM

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Date: 2008-06-26


Dimethyl sulfone (O'Neil et al. 2012)

Proper Name(s)

Common Name(s)

Source Material

Synthetic (Zajac et al. 2003, Gennaro 2000)

Route Of Administration


Dosage Form(s)

Those suited to the allowable route(s) of administration. This monograph is not intended to include food-like dosage forms such as bars, chewing gums or beverages.

Use(s) or Purpose(s)

Statement(s) to the effect of:



1500 - 6000 Milligrams per day , not to exceed 2000 Milligrams per single dose
 (Kim et al. 2006, Usha and Naidu 2004)

Directions For Use: Take with food. Avoid taking at bedtime (Kim et al. 2006)

Duration of use

Use for a minimum of 4 weeks to see beneficial effects  (Kim et al. 2006, Usha and Naidu 2004)

Risk Information

Statement(s) to the effect of:

Caution(s) and Warning(s):
  • Consult a health care practitioner if symptoms worsen.
  • Consult a health care practitioner prior to use if you are pregnant or breastfeeding

No statement is required

Known Adverse Reaction(s):
Some people may experience mild gastrointestinal bloating, constipation or indigestion  (Kim et al. 2006)

Non-medicinal ingredients

Must be chosen from the current Natural Health Products Ingredients Database and must meet the limitations outlined in the database.


  • The finished product specifications must be established in accordance with the requirements described in the NHPD Quality of Natural Health Products Guide.
  • The medicinal ingredient must comply with the requirements outlined in the Natural Health Products Ingredient Database (NHPID).
  • The medicinal ingredient may comply with the specifications outlined in the Methylsulfonylmethane Monograph published in the United States Pharmacopoeia.

References cited

  • Kim LS, Axelrod LJ, Howard P, Buratovich N, Waters RF. 2006. Efficacy of methylsulfonylmethane (MSM) in osteoarthritis pain of the knee: a pilot clinical trial. Osteoarthritis Cartilage 14:286-294.
  • NLM 2009: United States National Library of Medicine. ChemIDplus advanced [online]. Chemical name. RN: 000-00-0. Bethesda (MD): Specialized Information Services, United States National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health, United States Department of Health & Human Services. [Accessed 2009 May 19]. Available from:
  • O'Neil MJ, Smith A, Heckelman PE, Budavari S, editors. The Merck Index: An Encyclopedia of Chemicals, Drugs, and Biologicals, 13th edition. Whitehouse Station (NJ): Merck & Co., Inc.; 2001.
  • Usha PR, Naidu MUR. 2004. Randomised, double-blind, parallel, placebo-controlled study of oral glucosamine, methylsulfonylmethane and their combination in osteoarthritis. Clinical Drug Investigation 24(6):353-363.

References reviewed

  • Altman R, Brandt K, Hochberg M, Moskowitz R, Bellamy N, Bloch DA, Buckwalter J, Dougados M, Ehrlich G, Lequesne M, Lohmander S, Murphy WA Jr, Rosario-Jansen T, Schwartz B, Trippel S. 1996. Design and conduct of clinical trials in patients with osteoarthritis: recommendations from a task force of the Osteoarthritis Research Society; Results from a workshop. Osteoarthritis Cartilage 4(4):217-43.
  • Horvath K, Noker PE, Somfai-Relle S, Glávits R, Financsek I, Schauss AG. 2002. Toxicity of methylsulfonylmethane in rats. Food and Chemical Toxicology 40:1459-1462.
  • Lin A, Nguy CH, Shic F, Ross BD. 2001. Accumulation of methylsulfonylmethane in the human brain: identification by multinuclear magnetic resonance spectroscopy. Toxicology Letters 123:169-177.
  • Magnuson BA, Appleton J, Ames GB. 2007. Pharmacokinetics and Distribution of [35S]Methylsulfonylmethane Following Oral Administration to Rats. Journal of Agriculture and Food Chemistry 55:1033-1038.
  • Marieb E. 1992. Human Anatomy and Physiology, 2nd edition. Redwood City (CA): The Benjamin/Cummings Publishing Company, Inc.