Provider Education on Non-Pharmacologic Treatment of Osteoarthritis


Brandi Whetzell

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Osteoarthritis is an arthritic condition of the joints commonly found in the elderly population. This condition occurs as intra-articular cartilage wears down over time. Most patients present with joint pain. The pain that occurs from joint pain often times impedes physical activity, which can ultimately increase pain levels. There are several treatments for osteoarthritis, however, there is no cure. Providers often times prescribe nonsteroidal anti-inflammatories and other oral analgesics for pain management. Because osteoarthritis typically occurs in the elderly population, adding medications to what often times is a long list of medications can cause issues such as drug interactions and medication toxicities. Other non-pharmacologic treatments, such as diet and exercise and physical therapy, should be explored and attempted prior to adding in pharmacologic therapy. The purpose of this project is to educate providers on the need for non-pharmacologic treatment modalities for OA related symptoms and the benefits of non-pharmacologic treatment, as well as increase provider knowledge on non-pharmacologic treatment modalities. Data is being collected through means of pre and post tests. Paper tests along with an educational fact sheet were provided to orthopedic and primary care providers within a manila envelope. Data has not yet been analyzed.

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