Hip muscle strength and protection against structural worsening and poor function and disability outcomes in knee osteoarthritis

A. H. Chang*, J. S. Chmiel, O. Almagor, K. W. Hayes, A. Guermazi, P. V. Prasad, K. C. Moisio, Y. Zhang, J. Szymaszek, L. Sharma

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Objective: Examine associations of hip abductor strength with (1) cartilage damage worsening in the tibiofemoral and patellofemoral compartments 2 years later, and (2) poor function and disability outcomes 5 years later. Methods: Participants had knee osteoarthritis (K/L ≥ 2) in at least one knee. Hip abductor strength was measured using Biodex Dynamometry. Participants underwent 3.0T MRI of both knees at baseline and 2 years later. Baseline-to-2-year cartilage damage progression, defined as any worsening of WORMS cartilage damage score, was assessed at each tibiofemoral and patellofemoral surface. LLFDI (Late-Life Function and Disability Instrument) and Chair-Stand-Rate were recorded at baseline and 5-year follow-up; outcomes analyzed using quintiles. Poor outcomes were defined as remaining in the same low-function quintiles or being in a worse quintile at 5-year follow-up. We analyzed associations of baseline hip abductor strength with cartilage damage worsening and function and disability outcomes using multivariable log-binomial models. Results: 275 knees from 164 persons [age = 63.7 (SD = 9.8) years, 79.3% women] comprised the structural outcome sample, and 187 persons [age = 64.2 (9.7), 78.6% women] the function and disability outcomes sample. Greater baseline hip abductor strength was associated with reduced risks of baseline-to-2-year medial patellofemoral and lateral tibiofemoral cartilage damage worsening [adjusted relative risks (RRs) range: 0.80–0.83) and with reduced risks of baseline-to-5-year poor outcomes for Chair-Stand-Rate and LLFDI Basic Lower-Extremity Function and Disability Limitation (adjusted RRs range: 0.91–0.94). Conclusion: Findings support a beneficial role of hip abductor strength for disease modification and for function and disability outcomes, and as a potential therapeutic target in managing knee osteoarthritis.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)885-894
Number of pages10
JournalOsteoarthritis and Cartilage
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2019


  • Disability
  • Function
  • Knee OA
  • MRI
  • Strength

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Rheumatology
  • Biomedical Engineering
  • Orthopedics and Sports Medicine

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