• Did COVID-19 impact osteoarthritis - clinical perspective?

      Alhassan, Eaman; Siaton, Bernadette C; Hochberg, Marc C (Wolters Kluwer Health, 2022-01-01)
      PURPOSE OF REVIEW: To assess the impact of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic on patients with osteoarthritis (OA). RECENT FINDINGS: The COVID-19 pandemic negatively affected patients with OA irrespective of them contracting the infection. Patients with OA had a disruption in access to the healthcare system, which resulted in delays in joint replacement surgeries from cancellations of elective surgical procedures. On the other hand, the pandemic accelerated the drive towards telemedicine and telerehabilitation, with many nonurgent services being delivered remotely whenever possible. Cross-sectional studies showed that the majority of patients with OA were willing to accept the increased risks of contracting the COVID-19 infection and proceed with elective joint replacement surgeries. SUMMARY: The American College of Rheumatology and the European League Against Rheumatism issued guidelines for managing immune-mediated rheumatic diseases during the pandemic. However, these guidelines did not include recommendations for patients with OA.Healthcare providers, including physical therapists, should aim to schedule more frequent telemedicine follow-up appointments to maximize medical management while patients await elective joint procedures.