Reduction of joint pain in patients with knee osteoarthritis who have received monthly telephone calls from lay personnel and whose medical treatment regimens have remained stable

Arthritis Rheum. 1992 May;35(5):511-5. doi: 10.1002/art.1780350504.


Objective: We previously reported that monthly telephone contact by lay personnel, to promote self-care for patients with osteoarthritis (OA), was associated with improved joint pain and physical function after 1 year of followup. The present study was a secondary analysis to determine whether improvement was contingent on intensified medical treatment.

Methods: We reanalyzed control/treatment group differences in all 40 subjects with radiographically confirmed knee OA who had had no changes in antirheumatic drug therapy or institution of physical therapy during the period of observation.

Results: Group differences in measured pain remained significant (effect size [ES] = 0.65 SD, P less than 0.01). The same trend was observed for physical function (ES = 0.53 SD, P not significant).

Conclusion: The findings in this reanalysis suggest that periodic telephone support interventions are effective enough to be regarded as an adjunctive treatment for OA.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Randomized Controlled Trial
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Knee Joint / physiopathology*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Osteoarthritis / physiopathology*
  • Osteoarthritis / psychology
  • Osteoarthritis / therapy
  • Pain Management*
  • Social Support
  • Telephone