The approach for helping patients with painful and debilitating conditions, such as knee osteoarthritis, has thankfully changed, where the healthcare provider is no longer holding all the keys to a patient's journey to recovery. The importance of educating and empowering, as well as using exercise therapy, for those with aches and pains is paramount, and this has been backed up in research studies.
Goff et al. (2021) looked into whether there is an objective and subjective difference in groups with knee osteoarthritis who receive either standalone education, and those who receive a combination of other interventions. 4,107 participants were recruited for the study. Results showed that patients who received a combination of education and exercise therapy yielded the most significant results for improving function and reducing pain.
First-line intervention for people with knee osteoarthritis includes education, exercise therapy and weight management advice. There are other conservative approaches that include soft-tissue therapy, dry needling, mobilisation and laser therapy, which have shown to offer very encouraging results to improve quality of life and function.