For a study, researchers sought to determine patient and disease factors that were linked with the symptomatic severity of knee osteoarthritis (OA) at the time of the initial knee OA diagnosis by an orthopedist. Patients diagnosed with knee OA by a single orthopedic surgeon in a university-based tertiary care environment from 2016 to 2017 were included in the review of the medical records. At the time of the first OA diagnosis, all factors were examined. Subscales of the Knee Injury and Osteoarthritis Outcome Score–Pain, other Symptoms, knee-related quality of life, and function in daily living–were the main outcomes. The following determinants of primary outcomes were studied in multivariable regression analyses: gender, race, age, insurance type, body mass index, Charlson comorbidity index, and radiographic OA severity (Kellgren-Lawrence grade). The majority of the 559 patients in the research were African Americans (52.1%), female (71.7%), and had severe radiographic OA (Kellgren-Lawrence grade, 4; 68.7% ). Female sex, African American racial/ethnic group, Medicaid insurance, younger age, and severe radiographic OA were all linked with poorer symptoms, pain, and function (P<0.05 for all). The Charlson comorbidity score and body mass index were not statistically significant predictors of any outcome.

The study discovered gender, age, race, insurance, and radiographic OA severity discrepancies in the perception of knee OA difficulties at initial orthopedist diagnosis. Because most of these characteristics were also linked to faster OA progression, examining their biopsychosocial foundations might aid in determining which therapies are most likely to address the inequalities and postpone development to end-stage knee OA.