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Stephanie Studenski, MD, MPH, Chief of the Longitudinal Studies Section at the NIH National Institute on Aging, spoke about the importance of functional measurement in patients with reduced performance due to arthritis problems
As part of ACE’s leadership, along with the Canadian Association for Retired Persons (CARP) and Alzheimer’s Society of BC, in the development and launch of the Walk10Blocks app, we learned walking is good for your health. Research shows that even walking 10 city blocks a day, equivalent to about 2,000 – 3,000 steps or 1 km, can help delay dementia and may help improve cardiovascular and joint health over time.
Today at the ACR/ARHP annual meeting, Stephanie Studenski, MD, MPH, Chief of the Longitudinal Studies Section at the NIH National Institute on Aging, spoke about the importance of functional measurement in patients with reduced performance due to arthritis problems:
“Rheumatology was among the first disciplines to develop functional measures such as the 50-foot walk and grip strength, and in my original training as a rheumatologist, I was struck by how potentially powerful and meaningful these functional measurements are.” She added: “We’ve found that these measures are powerful predictors of overall effect in adults, including risk of hospitalization, length of stay, hospital-related complications, surgery related complications and overall survival.”
A team of student engineers from William Marsh Rice University, a private research university located in Houston, Texas, has developed a robotic horse that may help patients with arthritis. Based on the premise of hippotherapy, also known as equine-assisted therapy, the horse simulator is a robotic horse that can be ridden indoors anytime.
Hippotherapy relies on horses to improve the symptoms of patients with neurological or physical illnesses like autism, cerebral palsy, and arthritis. The rhythmic, swinging motion passes through the entire body and is thought to enhance balance, coordination and motor development. This form of treatment is prohibitive because of its cost and accessibility. Physical therapy sessions with a horse can cost upwards of $150 an hour. Continue reading
A clinical symposium yesterday at the ACR called New Frontiers in Osteoarthritis Treatment: The Role of Weight Loss, Surgery and Current Treatment Guidelines looked at the management of osteoarthritis (OA) patients through weight loss and exercise, surgery, and medications. The session also looked at the differences in treatment recommendations for OA.
Osteoarthritis and weight loss and exercise
In an interview with ACR Daily News, Stephen P. Messier, PhD, Professor of Health and Exercise Science at Wake Forest University, said: “When combined with exercise, weight loss is a level 1 method of treatment for knee osteoarthritis, and there’s strong support for both weight loss and exercise as the first-line treatment for knee osteoarthritis. I think the problem is that patients don’t know how to do it.”