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Occupational Therapy & Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis (OA) is a condition caused by inflammation in one or more joints. Symptoms of osteoarthritis include pain, stiffness, warmth, edema, decreased grip strength, and limited range of motion in the joints. Each of these symptoms can lead to a decrease in functional performance. In their 2018 article, Stoffer-Marx, et al. examined the effect interventions provided by an interdisciplinary team of occupational therapists, physical therapists, nurses, and dieticians, have on grip strength and functional had use in patients with OA, compare to that of routine OA care (Stoffer-Marx, et al., 2018). Combined interventions included a variety of strengthening and mobility exercises, orthotic and assistive device provision and information, thermotherapy use and information, compensatory strategies, information about physical activity, and if necessary, information about nutrition and weight loss (Stoffer-Marx, et al., 2018). They believe that using an interdisciplinary approach allows for a more client-centered, holistic practice that accounts for each patient’s individual needs (Stoffer-Marx, et al. 2018). Results showed that an interdisciplinary approach can significantly improve the grip strength and self-reported satisfaction of individual’s with OA (Stoffer-Marx, et al., 2018).


Stoffer-Marx, M. A., Klinger, M., Luschin, S. Meriauz-Kratochvila, S., Zettel-Tomenendal, M.,

Nell-Duxneuner, V., … Stamm, T. A. (2018). Functional consultation and exercises improve grip strength in osteoarthritis of the hand – A randomized controlled trial. Arthritis Research & Therapy, (1), 1.

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