Determinants of reduced walking speed in people with musculoskeletal pain

Ayis, Salma; Ebrahim, Shah; Williams, Susan; Jüni, Peter; Dieppe, Paul (2007). Determinants of reduced walking speed in people with musculoskeletal pain. Journal of rheumatology, 34(9), pp. 1905-1912. Toronto, Ont.: Journal of Rheumatology Pub. Co.

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OBJECTIVE: Maintenance of good walking speed is essential to independent living. People with musculoskeletal disease often have reduced walking speed. We investigated determinants of slower walking, other than musculoskeletal disease, that might provide valuable additional targets for therapy. METHODS: We analyzed data from the Somerset and Avon Survey of Health, a community based survey of people aged over 35 years. A total of 2703 participants who reported hip or knee pain at baseline (1994/1995) were studied, and reassessed in 2002-2003; 1696 were available for followup, and walking speed was tested in 1074. Walking speed (m/s) was used as outcome measure. Baseline characteristics, including comorbidities and socioeconomic factors, were tested for their ability to predict reduced walking speed using multiple linear regression analysis. RESULTS: Age, female sex, and immobility at baseline were predictive of slower walking speed. Other independent risk factors included the presence of cataract, low socioeconomic status, intermittent claudication, and other cardiovascular conditions. Having a cataract was associated with a decrease of 0.10 m/s (95% CI 0.03, 0.16). Those in social class V had a walking speed 0.22 m/s (95% CI 0.126, 0.31) slower than those in social class I. CONCLUSION: Comorbidities, age, female sex, and lower socioeconomic position determine walking speed in people with joint pain. Issues such as poor vision and social-economic disadvantage may add to the effect of musculoskeletal disease, suggesting the need for a holistic approach to management of these patients.

Item Type:

Journal Article (Original Article)


04 Faculty of Medicine > Pre-clinic Human Medicine > Institute of Social and Preventive Medicine (ISPM)

UniBE Contributor:

Jüni, Peter


600 Technology > 610 Medicine & health






Journal of Rheumatology Pub. Co.




Factscience Import

Date Deposited:

04 Oct 2013 14:53

Last Modified:

15 Jan 2015 19:36

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URI: (FactScience: 35719)

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