Author(s): Lo GH, , Driban JB, Kriska AM, McAlindon TE,
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Abstract OBJECTIVE: Regular physical activity, including running, is recommended based on known cardiovascular and mortality benefits. However, controversy exists regarding whether running can be harmful to knees. The purpose of this study is to evaluate the relationship of running with knee pain, radiographic osteoarthritis, and symptomatic osteoarthritis. METHODS: This was a retrospective cross-sectional study of Osteoarthritis Initiative participants (2004 - 2014) with knee x-ray readings, symptom assessments, and completed lifetime physical activity surveys. Using logistic regression, we evaluated the association of history of leisure running with the outcomes of frequent knee pain, radiographic osteoarthritis, and symptomatic osteoarthritis. Symptomatic osteoarthritis required at least one knee with both radiographic osteoarthritis and pain. RESULTS: Of 2637 participants, 55.8\% were female; mean age was 64.3 (SD 8.9) years; body mass index was 28.5 (SD 4.9) kg/m2 ; 29.5\% ran at some time in their lives. Unadjusted odds ratios of pain, radiographic osteoarthritis, and symptomatic osteoarthritis for those prior runners and current runners compared to those who never ran were 0.83 and 0.71, p for trend = 0.002, 0.83 and 0.78, p for trend = 0.01, and 0.81 and 0.64, p for trend = 0.0006 respectively. Adjusted models were similar except radiographic osteoarthritis results were attenuated. CONCLUSIONS AND RELEVANCE: There is no increased risk of symptomatic knee osteoarthritis among self-selected runners compared with non-runners in a cohort recruited from the community. In those without osteoarthritis, running does not appear detrimental to the knees. This article is protected by copyright. All rights reserved. © 2016, American College of Rheumatology.
This article was published in Arthritis Care Res (Hoboken)
and referenced in International Journal of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation