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People with knee osteoarthritis to be recruited onto trial

20th January 2011

People in Manchester with painful osteoarthritis of the knee are being recruited onto a major £1.8 million clinical trial which aims to find more effective ways of treating the common condition.

Around six million people in the UK suffer from osteoarthritis of the knee but treatment is limited to painkillers, exercise or ultimately, a knee replacement.

Now a team at the Universities of Manchester and Salford led by world-renowned osteoarthritis expert Professor David Felson from Boston, is running a series of clinical trials testing different treatments. The trials are being funded by Arthritis Research UK over five years and involve 300 local people.

The team is confident that their research will lead to real, practical benefits, but first they need more patients to volunteer to take part.

The team is testing the effectiveness of three treatments: knee braces, special shoes and inserts, and steroid injections.

Retired teacher Trevor Gamson from Cheadle, who has suffered from knee osteoarthritis for many years, took part in the trial testing if certain types of shoes and inserts can reduce pain, and by improving gait and posture, reduce pressure on the knee.

Mr Gamson is one of a number of volunteers to spend two hours walking in the gait laboratory at Salford University testing five different types of inserts and special shoes.

Mr Gamson, aged 77, has worn a wedge insert in his left shoe for a number of years and says that without it he would have had a knee replacement operation.

“I have very little cartilage left on the inside of my knee and was all set to have the knee replaced because of the awful pain. But after being sent to the gait clinic at Salford University when I had the insert fitted into my shoe, life has been much more bearable,” he says.

“The idea of the insert is to move the weight-bearing load away from the kneecap, to the right, so the load goes down the left side and reduces the pressure.”

With the help of his shoe insert Mr Gamson can play golf twice a week and leads an active lifestyle. “Knowing you have that support helps with the pain. So I put on my shoes with the insert in and off I go! It’s certainly been extremely helpful to me. I was happy to take part in the trial as I hope others will benefit from it.”

Dr Rich Jones, principal investigator of the trial, said: “Mr Gamson has found enormous benefits from his shoe insert, which is provided by the NHS separate to this trial. But we need to find out if it can help other people too, and which works best. Osteoarthritis of the knee is a huge problem and our approach could make a huge difference to millions of people.”

People in Manchester with osteoarthritis of the knee who would like to find out more about the research can contact the trial team for further information on 0161 306 0545 or 0161 306 0547.

 

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Comments

j blue

Friday 21st January 2011 @ 5:19

Are you preparing for or recovering from knee replacement surgery? Are you ready for knee rehab exercise? Check this exercise DVD for home use. Useful for pre or post-op fitness. Led by a pro trainer. http://tinyurl.com/yabu9b9

jonathon mellor

Tuesday 16th August 2011 @ 19:35

how do i register for knee trials ?????? im 40 yrs old and currently awaiting a knee replacment but have to lose more wieght. my current wieght is 19st. regards mr j mellor


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