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  • 1 April 2016 to 31 March 2017
  • Project No: 297
  • Funding round: FR 11

Knee osteoarthritis (OA) pain is a common condition affecting approximately 1 in 4 adults from middle age onwards. Knee pain restricts the ability to walk and complete everyday tasks including work. Although most people who consult their GP are given pain medication many are reluctant to take drug treatments regularly. Patients often lack support and guidance in understanding the behaviour of their symptoms and how they can best predict and manage their own patterns of pain. Evidence suggests that knee pain/OA is not experienced the same by everyone but most people experience good days and bad days. Currently there is a lack of evidence about how people’s daily activities relate to times when they have unusual increases in pain (flare-up). Capturing this information as it happens requires novel approaches to fast data collection.

We plan a feasibility and pilot web-based study. We will work with patients with knee OA to: 1) develop study questionnaires, 2) develop a novel web-based data collection system, 3) pilot test data collection procedures with 50 patients from two general practices. Participants will be invited to provide the following information over a two month period: i) routine information about their daily activities over the last seven day period at three time points, and ii) additional information about their daily activities for the previous seven days if participants experience an unusual increase in their knee pain (flare-up).

By evaluating our procedures to compare peoples’ activities and behaviours on their good days with those just before their bad days, we aim to use this study design to better understand how flare-ups may relate to daily activities that are potentially modifiable. This will allow us to develop a future main study to identify peoples’ individual triggers that lead to acute flare-up episodes of their symptoms.

Amount awarded: £79,958

Evidence synthesis working group

The collaboration will be conducting 18 high impact systematic reviews, under four workstreams.

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