World PT Day will focus on osteoarthritis

The focus for this year’s World PT Day on 8 September is osteoarthritis and the role of physiotherapists in its treatment and in the management of people affected by osteoarthritis. In 2023, World PT Day will focus on other rheumatological conditions.

The campaign is focused around the following key messages.

  • Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common joint condition: 520 million people around the world have OA, and 60% of OA cases are for knee OA. 
  • In a global study of 291 conditions, hip and knee OA was ranked as the 11th highest contributor to disability.
  • The exact cause of OA is unclear. Risk factors that increase the risk of OA include: having overweight or obesity; having a previous joint injury or joint surgery or history of joint overuse; genetics. 
  • Exercise is a first-line treatment for OA. A physiotherapist can provide advice and education about pain relief and ways to manage OA. They can teach people living with OA how to improve joint movement and strengthen muscles. 
  • It is important for people living with OA to keep as active as possible. This can help improve pain, reduce other symptoms of OA, and help people stay independent. 
  • Only about a third of people living with OA will get worse over time, and some see an improvement in pain and disability. A physiotherapist will be able to guide you on how to keep active.

World PT Day toolkit

The World PT Day toolkit includes a range of materials to share the campaign in your country/territory. Please note: the materials may not be amended without the permission of World Physiotherapy.

The information sheets and posters are available in Spanish and will shortly be available in French. A number of volunteer translators are working to translate the materials into more languages, which will be added to the World Physiotherapy website as and when they become available. 

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World PT Day press release and toolkit