HealthDay News — For patients with hip and knee osteoarthritis, a combined patient and provider intervention is associated with modest improvements in function, according to a study published in the Annals of Internal Medicine.

Kelli D. Allen, PhD, from the Durham VA Medical Center at Duke University in North Carolina, and colleagues examined the effectiveness of a combined patient and provider intervention for improving osteoarthritis outcomes in a cluster randomized trial. Participants included 30 providers and 300 outpatients with symptomatic hip or knee osteoarthritis. The patient intervention was telephone based and focused on weight management, physical activity, and cognitive behavioral pain management, while the provider intervention involved patient-specific osteoarthritis treatment recommendations delivered to primary care providers via the electronic medical record.

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The researchers found that Western Ontario and McMaster Universities Osteoarthritis Index (WOMAC) scores were 4.1 points lower in the osteoarthritis intervention group at 12 months (P = 0.009). The intervention group also had WOMAC function subscale scores that were 3.3 points lower (P = 0.005). There was no significant between-group difference in WOMAC pain subscale scores (P = 0.126) or in physical performance and depressive symptoms. More patients in the osteoarthritis intervention group received provider referral for recommended osteoarthritis treatments, although the number actually receiving the treatments did not differ between the groups.

“The combined patient and provider intervention resulted in modest improvement in self-reported physical function in patients with hip and knee osteoarthritis,” the authors write.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical and nutrition industries, as well as pharmacies.


Allen K, Yancy W, Bosworth H et al. A Combined Patient and Provider Intervention for Management of Osteoarthritis in Veterans: A Randomized Clinical Trial. Ann Intern Med. 2015. doi:10.7326/M15-0378.