Kinesthesia at the knee: The effect of osteoarthritis and bandage application




To investigate whether osteoarthritis (OA) of the knee or bandaging of the knee affects movement detection.


Movement detection levels were determined in 10 women aged > 65 years with moderate to severe knee OA and 10 healthy women matched for age, body mass index, and activity levels. Movements were imposed at 0.5°/second, 1.0°/second, and 2.5°/second. Additionally, detection levels were compared with and without the knee bandaged at a single velocity, (0.5°/second).


Controls perceived significantly smaller movements than OA subjects at all test velocities (P < 0.01). However, the bandage did not affect movement detection (P > 0.05).


Detection of movement at the knee was impaired in subjects with severe knee OA, and a bandage did not improve detection. Thus, considering previous findings that position sense is impaired, a generalized proprioceptive deficit appears to be associated with OA. This deficit could result from loss of receptors, altered muscle function, or the consequent joint instability.