Impact of COVID-19 Pandemic on Physical Activity, Pain, Mood, and Sleep in Adults With Knee Osteoarthritis

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Michael J. Rose Department of Physical Therapy & Athletic Training, Boston University, Boston, MA, USA

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Michael P. LaValley Department of Biostatistics, Boston University School of Public Health, Boston, MA, USA
Section of Rheumatology, Department of Medicine, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, MA, USA

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S. Reza Jafarzadeh Section of Rheumatology, Department of Medicine, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, MA, USA

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Kerry E. Costello Department of Physical Therapy & Athletic Training, Boston University, Boston, MA, USA

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Nirali Shah Department of Physical Therapy & Athletic Training, Boston University, Boston, MA, USA

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Soyoung Lee Department of Physical Therapy & Athletic Training, Boston University, Boston, MA, USA

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Belinda Borrelli Department of Health Policy and Health Services Research, Center for Behavioral Science Research, Boston University Henry M. Goldman School of Dental Medicine, Boston, MA, USA

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Stephen P. Messier Wake Forest University, Winston-Salem, NC, USA

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Tuhina Neogi Section of Rheumatology, Department of Medicine, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, MA, USA

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Deepak Kumar Department of Physical Therapy & Athletic Training, Boston University, Boston, MA, USA
Section of Rheumatology, Department of Medicine, Boston University School of Medicine, Boston, MA, USA

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Objective: To examine changes in physical activity, sleep, pain, and mood in people with knee osteoarthritis during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic by leveraging an ongoing randomized clinical trial. Methods: Participants enrolled in a 12-month parallel two-arm randomized clinical trial (NCT03064139) interrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic wore an activity monitor (Fitbit Charge 3) and filled out custom weekly surveys rating knee pain, mood, and sleep as part of the study. Data from 30 weeks of the parent study were used for this analysis. Daily step count and sleep duration were extracted from activity monitor data, and participants self-reported knee pain, positive mood, and negative mood via surveys. Metrics were averaged within each participant and then across all participants for prepandemic, stay-at-home, and reopening periods, reflecting the phased reopening in the state of Massachusetts. Results: Data from 28 participants showed small changes with inconclusive clinical significance during the stay-at-home and reopening periods compared with prepandemic for all outcomes. Summary statistics suggested substantial variability across participants with some participants showing persistent declines in physical activity during the observation period. Conclusion: Effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on physical activity, sleep, pain, and mood were variable across individuals with osteoarthritis. Specific reasons for this variability could not be determined. Identifying factors that could affect individuals with knee osteoarthritis who may exhibit reduced physical activity and/or worse symptoms during major lifestyle changes (such as the ongoing pandemic) is important for providing targeted health-care services and management advice toward those that could benefit from it the most.

Supplementary Materials

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