Objective: The purpose of this study was to investigate whether pain intensity and catastrophizing are associated with fear of falls and the number of falls in older persons with knee osteoarthritis (OA).
Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted involving 100 volunteers (male and female participants), 60 to 80 years old, with a diagnosis of knee OA. Patients were recruited from a physical therapy clinic in the city of São Paulo, Brazil, from March 2019 to November 2019. The following measures were used for the evaluations: Numerical Rating Pain Scale (NRPS), Pain-Related Self-Statement Scale (PRSS), and Falls Efficacy Scale. In statistical analysis, histograms were created to determine the distribution of data. Spearman's correlation coefficients (rs) were then calculated to determine the strength of the associations among the variables. The receiver operating characteristic curve was used to identify the accuracy of PRSS and NRPS in differentiating participants with a history of falls from those without.
Results: No significant correlation was found among the pain intensity, pain catastrophizing, fear of falling, and number of falls (rs value ranging from -0.033 to -0.167; P value ranging from .096-.743). The accuracy of PRSS and NRPS in differentiating participants with falls from those without was insufficient, with area under the curve values of 0.46 and 0.42, respectively.
Conclusion: Pain catastrophizing and intensity were not significantly associated with fear of falling and numbers of falls in older individuals with unilateral knee OA.
Author keywords: Catastrophizing; Pain; Accidental Falls; Osteoarthritis
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