Osteoarthritis Movement Fears: Implications and Resolution

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Ray Marks

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Published: 5 December 2021 | Article Type :

Abstract

Osteoarthritis, a largely irreversible highly painful disabling health condition with incalculable personal, financial and social costs and ramifications prevalent among immense numbers of older adults in all parts of the world is an enormous public health concern. A disease that is highly challenging to prevent and adequately ameliorate despite being the topic of immense research efforts in the last few decades, osteoarthritis is often conceived as the endpoint of multiple factors that impact joint status negatively, but that are not well understood. Moreover, although negative publications are often not accepted for publication, a fair number are currently found to produce suboptimal treatment results among different osteoarthritis groups, as well as more consistent findings of a possible lack of motivation or willingness to pursue intervention recommendations such as exercise. This mini review specifically sought to review one under researched albeit possibly important attribute of this condition, namely the psychological construct of fears of movement as this might affect joint and health status. Based largely on research published in the last five years [2016-2021], and that focused on the topic of fear in the context of osteoarthritis pathology and its progression, including fears of movement, a descriptive analysis was undertaken to shed light on how movement fears might impact osteoarthritis and what the research tells us. Results showed many older adults may be especially susceptible to excess osteoarthritis disability if they are excessively fearful of moving their affected painful or unstable arthritic joints, and may hence refrain from exercise as well as physical activity participation. This situation might not only undermine their functional ability, but their well being as well. Careful attention is indicated in this regard by providers as well as future researchers to enhance more desirable outcomes and reduce the public health burden.

Keywords: Aging, Elderly, Fear of Movement, Osteoarthritis, Pain, Prevention, Surgery, Treatment.

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Ray Marks. (2021-12-05). "Osteoarthritis Movement Fears: Implications and Resolution." *Volume 4*, 2, 16-27