Published online Nov 12, 2014. doi: 10.5499/wjr.v4.i3.22
Revised: September 19, 2014
Accepted: October 1, 2014
Published online: November 12, 2014
Core tip: Creatine supplementation primarily improves physical function by enhancing the re-synthesis of adenosine triphosphate via increased stores of phosphocreatine in the muscle. Through this pathway it provides greater levels of energy during physical activity and improves recovery. Creatine also augments muscle protein synthesis, thereby increasing muscle mass. These dual effects increase strength, reduce fatigue, and thereby improve function. In patients with conditions such as rheumatoid arthritis that are characterised by muscle loss and subsequent reductions in strength and physical function, creatine offers a potential therapeutic intervention for augmenting muscle mass and function that is safe, easy and inexpensive to administer.