Improving Self-Management of Chronic Knee Osteoarthritis Pain through Patient Education

Thumbnail Image
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title

Osteoarthritis is a widespread health issue affecting more than one-fifth of adult Americans. The symptom burden associated with osteoarthritis is significant, including discomfort, reduced quality of life, pain, and limited movement. With the aging of the population, the prevalence of osteoarthritis is expected to increase. Self-management of pain can improve outcomes for osteoarthritis patients. Therefore, this quality improvement project sought to evaluate the efficacy of implementing a patient education program in enhancing self-management of chronic knee osteoarthritis pain by reducing pain levels, use of pain medications, and patient revisits. Outcomes were also evaluated in terms of their impact on physical activity levels, quality of sleep, mood, and side effects from prescribed pain medication. The site for the project was an outpatient orthopedic clinic. Data were collected using SPAASMS (S- Score for pain, P- Physical activity levels, A- Additional pain medication, A- Additional Physician/ER Visits, S- Sleep, M Mood, S- Side effects) Score Card at pre-and post-intervention. The project lasted for four weeks. Participants consisted of 40 osteoarthritis patients aged 67.37 ± 10.42 years. The findings indicated that program participation resulted in a significant reduction in pain levels and use of pain medications, as well as a significant increase in physical activity levels (p<.05). Significant improvements were also seen in mood, medication side effects, and the overall SPAASMs score (p<.05). However, pain-related clinic revisits did not reduce significantly after the program (p>.05). Therefore, the program enhanced pain management amongst osteoarthritis patients.

Osteoarthritis, pain, self-management, patient education