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UCLan researchers extend knee pain study abroad

14 November 2014

Lyndsey Boardman

Physiotherapy researchers from the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) are taking their expertise to Turkey as part of a study into knee pain, a condition that may affect up to one in three people in the UK.

Team takes expertise to Turkey to build on existing project

Physiotherapy researchers from the University of Central Lancashire (UCLan) are taking their expertise to Turkey as part of a study into knee pain, a condition that may affect up to one in three people in the UK.

Professor James Selfe and Dr Jessie Janssen have already conducted a UK study into the various different kinds of Patellofemoral Pain (PFP) which is a type of knee pain.  It is currently unclear what precise mechanisms cause discomfort in the knee with recent research suggesting there are many different types of knee cap problems.

Their work with physiotherapy clinics to explore what combination of tests and questions can help to differentiate between different types of pain will help the researchers to develop better and more specific treatment.  Through £1,600 of Erasmus funding, James and Jessie will train a team of physiotherapists as Baskent University in Turkey to carry out an intervention study to build on their existing UK project.


“Our work in Turkey will allow us to assess outcome in subgroups of PFP patients and build on our previous UK-based feasibility study, where we were able to identify three separate sub-groups of patients who may require different types of treatment."

James said: “Our work in Turkey will allow us to assess outcome in subgroups of PFP patients and build on our previous UK-based feasibility study, where we were able to identify three separate sub-groups of patients who may require different types of treatment to each other.”

In the last decade, musculoskeletal disorders have increased to become the greatest cause of disability among EU member states and are the second greatest cause of disability worldwide.  PFP is a specific musculoskeletal disorder that can cause significant pain leading to limitations in societal participation and physical activity and is a condition commonly referred for physiotherapy.

It’s anticipated that the study will take around 18 months to complete with results being published in 2016 or 2017.