This small group meeting with a trained facilitator provides practices with a clinical update and an opportunity for interactive discussion with peers about diagnosis and management of knee and hip osteoarthritis, with a particular focus on clinical diagnostic criteria and non-pharmacological management options including weight management and exercise. Data from the NPS MedicineInsight program will be provided to help GPs and practice staff draw insights from current practice.
Relevance to General Practice
Osteoarthritis (OA) may be a common condition, but pain and loss of function are not inevitable. In fact, OA management has shifted from a traditional approach of pain control to one of multidisciplinary care and early non-pharmacological intervention to improve functional activity and quality of life. The GP has a central role, as the coordinator of this care.
Although widely used, the role of imaging in routine OA care is also under the spotlight. Based on evidence-based recommendations, typical presentations of knee and hip OA can be diagnosed using history and physical examination, and imaging for routine follow-up is generally not recommended.
Drawing on NPS MedicineInsight data, this meeting will explore the role of clinical diagnostic criteria for diagnosis and management of knee and hip OA. It will also focus on the central role of non-pharmacological management, particularly weight loss and exercise, for reducing pain and improving physical function in these patients.
- Use history and physical examination alone to confidently diagnose OA of the knee or hip in patients with typical features.
- Explain the limited role of X-ray and MRI for the diagnosis and ongoing management of OA of the knee or hip.
- Develop and agree on an individualised OA management plan with each patient, incorporating weight management, exercise and follow-up.
- Recognise the role of analgesics as an adjunct to the non-pharmacological management of OA, and if required, use a trial-based approach with regular review.
- Discuss systems in your practice and prioritise areas for improvement in the management of patients with OA.
Domains of General Practice
D1. Communication skills and the patient-doctor relationship
D2. Applied professional knowledge and skills
D3. Population health and the context of general practice
D4. Professional and ethical role
D5. Organisational and legal dimensions
Curriculum Contextual Units
- Adult health
- Care of older people
- Men's health
- Musculoskeletal and sports medicine