Feature Article

Medical management of knee, hand and hip osteoarthritis

Feature Article

Medical management of knee, hand and hip osteoarthritis

David Massasso, Lyn March

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Abstract

To date there are still no ‘cures’ or modalities to reverse osteoarthritis, but numerous nonpharmacological and pharmacological interventions have been shown to improve affected patients’ pain, function and quality of life.

Key Points

  • There are no ‘cures’ or modalities to reverse osteoarthritis (OA), but numerous nonpharmacological and pharmacological interventions have been shown to improve pain, function and quality of life.
  • Nonpharmacological strategies that should be considered in all patients include educational techniques, individualised exercise programs and regular review.
  • Some patients with OA may benefit from the use of appliances or mechanical aids, acupuncture and/or occupational therapy assessment.
  • Pharmacological interventions for OA involve both systemic and localised therapies; a stepped approach to therapy is often appropriate and should be individualised depending on the patient’s situation and comorbidities.
  • A multifaceted approach is essential in the management of patients with OA.