Arthritis and musculoskeletal conditions are a national health priority, primarily because the prevalence and attendant costs of these conditions are extremely high: persisting symptoms from back pain and osteoarthritis, alone, affect more than 20% of Australians. The expected rise in prevalence of disability associated with arthritis and musculoskeletal conditions in the coming decades will translate to a dramatic escalation in costs and burden on the community. Prevention of persisting symptoms and disability after an acute episode is an enormous challenge, and is clearly the focus for the future. However, effective prevention, including successful rehabilitation after injury, requires much more underpinning knowledge than is currently available.
The Arthritis and Musculoskeletal research group at the Faculty of Health Sciences, University of Sydney are currently investigating effective prevention and treatments strategies for common musculoskeletal conditions. We are investigating pathological and clinical diagnoses of conditions where this has previously been unrewarding, prevalence of various conditions where this was previously unknown, exploring novel treatments to improve outcomes for our patients, and identifying clear risk factors and indicators of poor prognosis for various specific musculoskeletal conditions.
Specifically, the Arthritis and Musculoskeletal research group is investigating issues related to osteoarthritis, back pain, neck pain, foot and ankle conditions, shoulder pain and hip and groin injuries. Our work is conducted in collaboration with colleagues nationally and internationally, and includes researchers with relevant expertise, such as psychologists, rheumatologists, podiatrists, psychiatrists, epidemiologists, statisticians, exercise physiologists, biomechanists, general practitioners, surgeons, pharmacists, physiologists and neuroscientists.