Elderly woman bone joint pain

The University of East Anglia is conducting a new study to discover what effect the coronavirus lockdown has had on people with bone, joint and muscle pain and is inviting people to take part in an online survey.

Researchers are investigating the topic after their previous research revealed the challenges and poor health outcomes caused by social isolation and loneliness for people with conditions like osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, lower back pain, osteoporosis and fibromyalgia.

The study will consist of a 12-week online survey where people report and track how they are coping during the self-isolation and shielding measures and is being led by Dr Toby Smith from UEA’s School of Health Sciences and Prof Alex MacGregor from UEA’s Norwich Medical School.

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“Bone, joint and muscle pain is a major cause of disability for people across the UK. People with these problems often experience pain, joint stiffness, fatigue and muscle weaknesses,” explained Dr Smith.

“Bone, joint and muscle diseases are frequently managed with a combination of physical activity and medications.

“The coronavirus pandemic is a major challenge to people’s health and wellbeing, both to young and older people.

“With the current period of self-isolation because of coronavirus, we are worried that this may become a much greater problem – particularly for those with bone, joint and muscle pain.

“We want to know how this might be affecting pain, who is most at risk of experiencing flare-ups of their pain and symptoms, as well as understanding who is most at risk of experiencing reduced wellbeing due to social isolation and loneliness.

“We will also be exploring what strategies or skills are needed to be able to support people to cope better with their pain and symptoms during this time.

“This work is important as it will tell us who is most at risk of poor health and wellbeing during this time, so health services can better support these people during the COVID-19 pandemic.”

For those with customers that may wish to take part in the study, the survey and further details can be found here

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