Biomechanical Alterations during Sit-to-Stand Transfer Are Caused by a Synergy between Knee Osteoarthritis and Obesity

Loek Verlaan*, Ramon J. Boekesteijn, Pieter W. Oomen, Wai-Yan Liu, Marloes J. M. Peters, M. Adhiambo Witlox, Pieter J. Emans, Lodewijk W. van Rhijn, Kenneth Meijer

*Corresponding author for this work

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Osteoarthritis is one of the major causes of immobility and its current prevalence in elderly (>60 years) is 18% in women and 9.6% in men. Patients with osteoarthritis display altered movement patterns to avoid pain and overcome movement limitations in activities of daily life, such as sit-to-stand transfers. Currently, there is a lack of evidence that distinguishes effects of knee osteoarthritis on sit-to-stand performance in patients with and without obesity. The purpose of this study was therefore to investigate differences in knee and hip kinetics during sit-to-stand movement between healthy controls and lean and obese knee osteoarthritis patients. Fifty-five subjects were included in this study, distributed over three groups: healthy controls (n=22), lean knee osteoarthritis (n=14), and obese knee OA patients (n=19). All subjects were instructed to perform sit-to-stand transfers at self-selected, comfortable speed. A three-dimensional movement analysis was performed to investigate compensatory mechanisms and knee and hip kinetics during sit-to-stand movement. No difference in sit-to-stand speed was found between lean knee OA patients and healthy controls. Obese knee osteoarthritis patients, however, have reduced hip and knee range of motion, which is associated with reduced peak hip and knee moments. Reduced vertical ground reaction force in terms of body weight and increased medial ground reaction forces indicates use of compensatory mechanisms to unload the affected knee in the obese knee osteoarthritis patients. We believe that an interplay between obesity and knee osteoarthritis leads to altered biomechanics during sit-to-stand movement, rather than knee osteoarthritis alone. From this perspective, obesity might be an important target to restore healthy sit-to-stand biomechanics in obese knee OA patients.

Original languageEnglish
Article number3519498
Number of pages8
JournalBioMed Research International
Publication statusPublished - 2018


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