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Investigation of hip abductor activation in subjects with clinical unilateral hip osteoarthritis
  1. K J Sims1,
  2. C A Richardson1,
  3. S G Brauer2
  1. 1Department of Physiotherapy, University of Queensland, St Lucia, Queensland 4072, Australia
  2. 2Department of Physiotherapy, Princess Alexandra Hospital, Woolloongabba, Queensland, Australia
  1. Correspondence to:
    Dr K Sims, Department of Physiotherapy, University of Queensland, St Lucia, Queensland 4072, Australia;
    kevsims{at}hotmail.com

Abstract

Objectives: (a) To compare the magnitude of gluteus medius and tensor fascia lata activation between a group of subjects with clinical unilateral hip osteoarthritis and a group of healthy older adults. (b) To compare the magnitude of activation of the gluteus medius and tensor fascia lata between sides in a group of subjects with clinical unilateral hip osteoarthritis and a group of healthy older adults.

Methods: 19 subjects with clinical unilateral hip osteoarthritis and 19 healthy controls were investigated. The subjects performed a stepping task during which recordings were obtained using surface electromyograms from the hip abductors, and kinetic data were obtained from a dual force platform.

Results: Subjects with clinical hip osteoarthritis had higher gluteus medius activation than the healthy older adults (p=0.037). In addition, there were no differences in the magnitude of gluteus medius activation between the sides (p=0.733). There was no difference in the force platform data between the groups (p=0.078).

Conclusions: The increased magnitude of gluteus medius activation in the group with hip osteoarthritis is evidence of a muscular dysfunction associated with hip disease. This has implications for the progressive nature of the disease and for its conservative management.

  • gluteus medius
  • stepping
  • hip
  • osteoarthritis
  • AP, anteroposterior
  • COP, centre of pressure
  • EMG, electromyography
  • GMD, gluteus medius
  • ML, mediolateral
  • OA, osteoarthritis
  • RM-ANOVA, repeated measures analysis of variance
  • RMS, root mean square
  • TFL, tensor fascia lata
  • VAS, visual analogue scale
  • WOMAC, Western Ontario and McMaster University Osteoarthritis (index)
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