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Progressive Resistance Training or Neuromuscular Exercise for Hip Osteoarthritis : A Multicenter Cluster Randomized Controlled Trial.

BACKGROUND: Exercise is recommended as first-line treatment for patients with hip osteoarthritis (OA). However, randomized controlled trials providing evidence for the optimal exercise type are lacking.

OBJECTIVE: To investigate whether progressive resistance training (PRT) is superior to neuromuscular exercise (NEMEX) for improving functional performance in patients with hip OA.

DESIGN: Multicenter, cluster-randomized, controlled, parallel-group, assessor-blinded, superiority trial. ( NCT04714047).

SETTING: Hospitals and physiotherapy clinics.

PARTICIPANTS: 160 participants with clinically diagnosed hip OA were enrolled from 18 January 2021 to 28 April 2023 and randomly assigned to PRT ( n = 82) or NEMEX ( n = 78).

INTERVENTION: Twelve weeks of PRT or NEMEX with 2 supervised 60-minute group sessions each week. The PRT intervention consisted of 5 high-intensity resistance training exercises targeting muscles at the hip and knee joints. The NEMEX intervention included 10 exercises and emphasized sensorimotor control and functional stability.

MEASUREMENTS: The primary outcome was change in the 30-second chair stand test (30s-CST). Key secondary outcomes were changes in scores on the pain and hip-related quality of life (QoL) subscales of the Hip Disability and Osteoarthritis Outcome Score (HOOS).

RESULTS: The mean changes from baseline to 12-week follow-up in the 30s-CST were 1.5 (95% CI, 0.9 to 2.1) chair stands with PRT and 1.5 (CI, 0.9 to 2.1) chair stands with NEMEX (difference, 0.0 [CI, -0.8 to 0.8] chair stands). For the HOOS pain subscale, mean changes were 8.6 (CI, 5.3 to 11.8) points with PRT and 9.3 (CI, 5.9 to 12.6) points with NEMEX (difference, -0.7 [CI, -5.3 to 4.0] points). For the HOOS QoL subscale, mean changes were 8.0 (CI, 4.3 to 11.7) points with PRT and 5.7 (CI, 1.9 to 9.5) points with NEMEX (difference, 2.3 [CI, -3.0 to 7.6] points).

LIMITATION: Participants and physiotherapists were not blinded.

CONCLUSION: In patients with hip OA, PRT is not superior to NEMEX for improving functional performance, hip pain, or hip-related QoL.

PRIMARY FUNDING SOURCE: Independent Research Fund Denmark.

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