The study is being funded by a five-year grant of more than £788,000 from the Arthritis Research Campaign.
Although osteoarthritis affects millions of older people in the UK, and is a major source of pain and disability, it is not considered a health priority by the NHS.
A recent survey showed that only 29 per cent of people with osteoarthritis received appropriate care from health services, compared to 83 per cent of patients with heart disease.
Dr George Peat, senior lecturer in clinical epidemiology at the Arthritis Research Campaign National Primary Care Centre at Keele, who is leading the project said: “Our recent research has shown that almost half of people registered with GPs in North Staffordshire who have severe joint pain don’t go to their GP in the course of a year, possibly because they think their doctor will not be able to do anything about it.
“Patients will talk to their GP about their diabetes or their high blood pressure, but not their osteoarthritis or joint pain, and we want to find out what is stopping them from raising these problems with their doctor – or what is stopping the GP from asking about them.”
Dr Peat said because osteoarthritis was not perceived as life-threatening and because there was no existing framework for the management of osteoarthritis within the NHS, osteoarthritis and joint pain were being pushed down the health agenda.
The multi-disciplinary Keele team of more than 20 researchers - including research nurses, GPs, epidemiologists, rheumatologists, physiotherapists and scientists - plan to build up a picture of the long-term “natural history” of joint pain and osteoarthritis, and also patients’ experiences in general practice.
With unique access to patients’ health care records, they will collect information from consultations of an existing cohort of more than 1,400 people over the age of 50 with knee pain and hand pain attending GP practices in North Staffordshire over six years. They will also set up a new group of 500 people over the age of 50 with foot problems and follow their experiences with their GPs over a three year period.
Specially trained physiotherapists and occupational therapists will carry out examinations of patients at clinics at the Haywood Hospital in Stoke-on-Trent. DNA samples will be taken, x-ray data collected, and patients will also be asked to complete questionnaires as part of the study.
Dr Peat said the large numbers of people suffering from osteoarthritis and joint pain deserved better basic primary care, and should be able to access it. “People spend many years living with joint pain, and it’s surprising how little long-term research has been done,” he added. “We need a broader approach that pays direct attention to the symptoms and difficulties that people experience, and the impact it has on their lives. We hope that our research will go some way to providing that.”
The Arthritis Research Campaign recently awarded £2.5m to support its new National Primary Care Centre at Keele University, which is due to be officially opened in December. The aim is to raise the profile of primary care and to carry out research which will lead to more effective treatment and management of osteoarthritis and common musculoskeletal conditions.
Chris Stone | alfa
WAKE-UP provides new treatment option for stroke patients | International study led by UKE
17.05.2018 | Universitätsklinikum Hamburg-Eppendorf
First form of therapy for childhood dementia CLN2 developed
25.04.2018 | Universitätsklinikum Hamburg-Eppendorf
So-called quantum many-body scars allow quantum systems to stay out of equilibrium much longer, explaining experiment | Study published in Nature Physics
Recently, researchers from Harvard and MIT succeeded in trapping a record 53 atoms and individually controlling their quantum state, realizing what is called a...
The historic first detection of gravitational waves from colliding black holes far outside our galaxy opened a new window to understanding the universe. A...
A team led by Austrian experimental physicist Rainer Blatt has succeeded in characterizing the quantum entanglement of two spatially separated atoms by observing their light emission. This fundamental demonstration could lead to the development of highly sensitive optical gradiometers for the precise measurement of the gravitational field or the earth's magnetic field.
The age of quantum technology has long been heralded. Decades of research into the quantum world have led to the development of methods that make it possible...
Cardiovascular tissue engineering aims to treat heart disease with prostheses that grow and regenerate. Now, researchers from the University of Zurich, the Technical University Eindhoven and the Charité Berlin have successfully implanted regenerative heart valves, designed with the aid of computer simulations, into sheep for the first time.
Producing living tissue or organs based on human cells is one of the main research fields in regenerative medicine. Tissue engineering, which involves growing...
A team of scientists of the Max Planck Institute for the Structure and Dynamics of Matter (MPSD) at the Center for Free-Electron Laser Science in Hamburg investigated optically-induced superconductivity in the alkali-doped fulleride K3C60under high external pressures. This study allowed, on one hand, to uniquely assess the nature of the transient state as a superconducting phase. In addition, it unveiled the possibility to induce superconductivity in K3C60 at temperatures far above the -170 degrees Celsius hypothesized previously, and rather all the way to room temperature. The paper by Cantaluppi et al has been published in Nature Physics.
Unlike ordinary metals, superconductors have the unique capability of transporting electrical currents without any loss. Nowadays, their technological...
02.05.2018 | Event News
13.04.2018 | Event News
12.04.2018 | Event News
18.05.2018 | Power and Electrical Engineering
18.05.2018 | Information Technology
18.05.2018 | Information Technology