Patient information on Osteoarthritis
Active Management of OsteoArthritis
Arthritis is a major cause of disability and chronic pain in Australia.
>3.95 Million Australians suffer from arthritis
Up to two thirds of people suffering from osteoarthritis are of working age.
Osteoarthritis is a progressive condition.
Traditional treatments are only directed toward pain relief/analgesia.
We believe in the active management of arthritis.
Whilst pain relief remains a primary objective, we use a multidisciplinary approach that aims to actively prevent and reduce progression of arthritis.
What is Involved ?
Prior to any treatment you will receive a thorough `arthritis health care’ consultation with one of our sports medicine physicians. Current pain management therapies will be optimised.
If relevant, further nutritional and exercise consultations will be arranged.
Your suitability for other `advanced medical therapy’ options will be assessed.
Formal imaging (XRays or MRI) will be arranged if required.
Your response to treatment will be regularly followed up to maximise potential improvement.
Primary Medical Therapy
• Non Steroidal Anti-inflammatories
*It is important to consult with your doctor prior to using anti-inflammatories in the treatment of your
• Glucosamine is an amino-acid that forms the common `back bone’ of cartilage matrix.
• Evidence suggests that glucosamine supplements may offer both pain relief and reduce the
progression of arthritis
• At least 1500mg/day of Glucosamine Sulphate (NOT Glucosamine Hydrochloride)
• Many glucosamine preparation have additional additives. Some evidence suggests additional
benefits with Glucosamine + Chondroitin Sulphate preparations.
• Allergy/anaphylaxis - Glucosamine is derived from shell fish.
• McAlindon, et al. Glucosamine and Chondroitin for Treatment of Osteoarthritis - Review Article,
JAMA 2000, 283(11):1469-1475
• Clegg, et al. Glucosamine, Chondroitin Sulphate, and the Two in Combination for Painful Knee
Osteoarthritis, N Engl J Med 2006, 354:795-808
• Regular and appropriate exercise can be effective in reducing pain and disability associated with arthritis
• A structured program created and supervised by a professional rehabilitation Exercise Physiologist or
Physiotherapist is recommended.
• Exercise Principles (FITT)
Frequency : At least 3 session per week for > 8weeks
Intensity : Moderate Intensity
Type of exercise : Aerobic, resistance and load bearing
Time : At least 30minute sessions
• Research :
Petrella, et al. Is exercise effective treatment for osteoarthritis of the knee?, BJSM 2000, 34:326-331
Podiatry assessment and relevant biomechanical adjustment can often help to unload areas of arthritis and therefore reduce pain and improve function.
• Increased weight is a risk factor for the development of osteoarthritis in weight bearing ie. (hip and knee)
and also non weight bearing joints (ie. hand).
• Loss of 5kg has been shown to be effective in reducing the risk of knee arthritis by a factor of up to 50%.
• It is important to have a structured weight loss program developed by a qualified nutritionalist or dietitian.
• Research :
Felson, et al. Risk factors for incident radiographic knee osteoarthritis in the elderly: the Framingham
Study. Arthritis Rheum 1997, 40:728-733