The application of creatine supplementation in medical rehabilitation

Kylie K. Harmon, Jeffrey R. Stout, David H. Fukuda, Patrick S. Pabian, Eric S. Rawson, Matt S. Stock

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


Numerous health conditions affecting the musculoskeletal, cardiopulmonary, and nervous systems can result in physical dysfunction, impaired performance, muscle weakness, and disuse-induced atrophy. Due to its well-documented anabolic potential, creatine monohydrate has been investigated as a supplemental agent to mitigate the loss of muscle mass and function in a variety of acute and chronic conditions. A review of the literature was conducted to assess the current state of knowledge regarding the effects of creatine supplementation on rehabilitation from immobilization and injury, neurodegenerative diseases, cardiopulmonary disease, and other muscular disorders. Several of the findings are encouraging, showcasing creatine’s potential efficacy as a supplemental agent via preservation of muscle mass, strength, and physical function; however, the results are not consistent. For multiple diseases, only a few creatine studies with small sample sizes have been published, making it difficult to draw definitive conclusions. Rationale for discordant findings is further complicated by differences in disease pathologies, intervention protocols, creatine dosing and duration, and patient population. While creatine supplementation demonstrates promise as a therapeutic aid, more research is needed to fill gaps in knowledge within medical rehabilitation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1825
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2021
Externally publishedYes


  • Amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
  • Atrophy
  • Cardiopulmonary disease
  • Immobilization
  • Mitochondrial cytopathy
  • Muscle damage
  • Muscular dystrophy
  • Parkinson’s Disease
  • Recovery
  • Supplements

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


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