Self-management programmes for people with osteoarthritis do not reduce pain or the number of visits to their GP, according to a new study.
The UK study, of 812 patients with osteoarthritis in their hips and knees, recruited from GP surgeries, compared outcomes in an intervention group with a control group.
The intervention group received an arthritis education booklet and an invitation to participate in a local Challenging Arthritis course, whereasthe control group received only the booklet.
Outcomes were assessed four months and a year later with questionnaires. Findings show patients in the intervention groupwere more confident about managing pain but they didnot experience significantly reductions inpain. No difference was seen in the number of GP visits in 12 months.
British Jounral of Medicine (2006) Online publication: DOI: 10.1136/bmj.38965.375718.80