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Factors influencing the use of outcome measures in knee osteoarthritis: A mixed method study of physiotherapists in Nigeria.

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BACKGROUND:

Osteoarthritis (OA) of the knee constitutes a significant proportion of musculoskeletal disorders managed in physiotherapy clinics worldwide. Best practice guidelines in the management of OA ensure the use of outcome measures.

AIM:

This study explored the factors influencing the use of outcome measures in management of patients with knee OA among physiotherapists in southwestern Nigeria.

METHODS:

Mixed method design was used that involved a cross-sectional survey of 77 purposively selected physiotherapists and a focus group discussion with another 6 physiotherapists.

RESULTS:

Participants (48 males, 29 females) were aged 35.3 ± 7.3 years. Fifty-two (67.5%) participants reported the use of outcome measures in the treatment of the patients with knee OA. The perceived barriers reported were lack of time/heavy workload (55.9%); lack of standardization of outcome measures (45%); lack of motivation (36.4%); and nonavailability of outcome measures in the clinic (36.4%). Reported perceived facilitators include interest/need to track patient's progress and ethical practice (87.1%); familiarity with outcome measures (87.0%); and understanding of the benefits of using outcome measures (87.0%).

CONCLUSION:

There is a need to establish good organizational structure focusing on the use of outcome measures in practice and development of a concessional toolkit of short and easily applicable instruments with user description.

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