Long-term clinical benefits and costs of an integrated rehabilitation programme compared with outpatient physiotherapy for chronic knee pain

Sally A. Jessep, Nicola E. Walsh, Julie Ratcliffe and Michael V. Hurley

The objective of this study was to establish the feasibility of ESCAPE-knee pain [Enabling Self-management and Coping with Arthritic knee Pain through Exercise] and compare its clinical effectiveness and costs with outpatient physiotherapy.  Sixty-four people with chronic knee pain underwent either outpatient physiotherapy or ESCAPE-knee pain.  Both groups demonstrated similar improvements in clinical outcomes. Outpatient physiotherapy cost £130 per person and the healthcare utilisation costs of participants over 1 year were £583. The ESCAPE-knee pain programme cost £64 per person and the healthcare utilisation costs of participants over 1 year were £320.

ESCAPE-knee pain can be delivered as a community-based integrated rehabilitation programme for people with chronic knee pain. Both ESCAPE-knee pain and outpatient physiotherapy produced sustained physical and psychosocial benefits, but ESCAPE-knee pain cost less and was more cost-effective.

Physiotherapy, 21 March 2009, online article

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