To comprehensively identify components of the physical limitation concept in knee osteoarthritis (OA) and to rate the clinical importance of these using perspectives of both patients and health professionals.
Concept mapping, a structured group process, was used to identify and organize data in focus groups (patients) and via a global web-based survey (professionals). Ideas were elicited through a nominal group technique and then organized using multidimensional scaling, cluster analysis, participant validation, rating of clinical importance, and thematic analyses to generate a conceptual model of physical limitations in knee OA.
Fifteen Danish patients and 200 international professionals contributed to generating the conceptual model. Five clusters emerged: ‘Limitations/physical deficits’; ‘Everyday hurdles’; ‘You’re not the person you used to be’; ‘Need to adjust way of living’; and ‘External limitations,’ each with sub-clusters. Patients generally found their limitations more important than the professionals did.
Patients and professionals agreed largely on the physical limitation concept in knee OA. Some limitations of high importance to patients were lower rated by the professionals, highlighting the importance of including patients when conceptualizing patient outcomes. These data offer new knowledge to guide selection of clinically relevant outcomes and development of outcome measures in knee OA.