12th October 2023

World Arthritis Day 2023 - It's time to talk about this challenging condition and to ensure pioneering treatments are at the heart of the conversation

World Arthritis Day is an annual, global initiative, with a clear objective of raising awareness around this painful and often debilitating condition which affects over 10 million people in the UK. Yet, despite a large suffering population, there has been very little innovation in the range of osteoarthritis (OA) treatments on offer to meaningfully help patients – until now.

World Arthritis Day 2023

Here, at Contura Orthopaedics, we’re committed to playing a key role in ensuring that the debate about novel treatments – such as our single hydrogel injection, Arthrosamid®, is always at the forefront of our industry and that orthopaedic surgeons, physiotherapists and musculoskeletal specialists are fully informed on evidence-based innovation when making decisions about the best treatment course for their patients.

But, we also believe that action speaks louder than words – which is why today feels the right time for a quick ‘throwback’ to the ‘Great Knee OA Debate’ which we were so proud to host on September 13th in the month leading up to World Arthritis Day (which takes place today, October 12th).

The day-long conference was a unique opportunity to bring together some of the UK’s leading experts in musculoskeletal health, with a specific interest in the treatment of knee osteoarthritis. 15 impressive speakers took to the ‘stage’ over the course of the day, presenting a range of compelling data, research findings, patient testimonials and sharing significant treatment milestones, such as news of one London-based surgeon collating data from 100 patients across his “12-month journey with Arthrosamid”.

And, to compliment the current reporting of benefits that patients are experiencing from Arthrosamid® treatment, representatives from Denmark (where the novel hydrogel was first pioneered) spoke about the history and heritage of Arthrosamid® and the learnings of “12 years of experience” since the injection was first used to treat arthritis in humans (presented by Consultant Rheumatologist, Dr Andreas Hartkopp).

With patient care and positive outcomes at the heart of the conference, key speakers talked through a range of issues faced by clinicians when advising their patients on the most appropriate options available to help treat and alleviate the pain, discomfort and stiffness caused by osteoarthritis.

A panel of 6 esteemed experts (with specialities comprising orthopaedic surgery, sports medicine and physiotherapy) discussed the challenges associated with successfully treating knee osteoarthritis as well as highlighting the downsides of many traditional treatment options (from steroid injections to surgery).

The speakers fielded a number of thought-provoking and insightful questions from their peers and fellow delegates about the benefits of Arthrosamid® (leading to lively and important discussions about safety profile, efficacy, costs, availability and success rates)..

Overall, the consensus of the day was very much that hydrogel injections, like Arthrosamid®, provide a real and viable alternative to the prospect of a total knee replacement – particularly in younger patients (those in their 50s, 60s and spritely 70s) who are keen to delay this radical treatment option which requires a difficult and lengthy recovery period, and which may need revision surgery if the initial procedure is carried out too early.

As the leading physiotherapist, Charlie Goodchild (founder of London’s ‘Better’ physiotherapy and performance centres) commented during his session; “you can’t un-have surgery

CEO of Contura Orthopaedics Ltd, Rakesh Tailor, opened the ‘Great Knee Debate’, introducing the impressive line-up of speakers, which also included Contura’s Managing Director and Chief Scientific Officer, Dr Ieva Ankorina-Stark who had flown in from Copenhagen to chair a keynote session about the histology of hydrogel and Arthrosamid’s mode of action.

Rakesh comments: “At Contura, we are so passionate about spreading the word about the benefits of our unique hydrogel, Arthrosamid®, which we’re so proud to have developed, offering an alternative to current therapies and invasive surgery. Arthrosamid® fulfils an unmet clinical need for an effective, long acting, safe and minimally invasive treatment to alleviate pain associated with knee osteoarthritis. It was incredibly inspiring to hear the experiences and feedback from clinicians across the UK who are treating patients and achieving such promising – and at times, life-transforming – results.

“We are also totally committed to exchanging ideas, sharing knowledge and data as it important to learn from our colleagues, with the ultimate aim of delivering the best outcomes possible for our patients. It was therefore a huge privilege to host the first ever “Great Knee OA Debate” and to be in a position to facilitate such an important and engaging day of discussion. We hope this will be the first of many such conferences and it’s wonderful to be able to reflect upon, and to shine and light on, this event on World Arthritis Day 2023.”

The feedback from those who attended the event, either as speakers or delegates has been extremely positive and encouraging, underlining an appetite for wider and ongoing debate about the progressive treatments which are evolving to help people affected by knee osteoarthritis. Here are just three examples of what leading experts in the industry are saying about the Great Knee OA Debate and the importance of innovation in patient care:

“Presenting at the Great Knee OA debate gave me a platform to celebrate the role of physiotherapy as a mode of treatment for those suffering with arthritic knee pain. The best part of the day was that following my talk, I was inundated with follow up questions from the attendees. The vast majority of attendees were doctors which goes to show the value of ensuring that discussions around optimising treatment for osteoarthritis should always take a multi-disciplinary approach.” Mr Charlie Goodchild Sport and Exercise Physiotherapist – Founder Better Never Ends Group

"It was a pleasure to be part of such a progressive and well informed group of clinicians. Certainly very exciting times for patients suffering with knee arthritis who are not yet ready for a joint replacement." Andrew Miller Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon l Royal Gwent Hospital – South West Wales Orthopaedic Group

“It was a privilege to join the Great Knee OA Treatment Debate and share my experience using Arthrosamid. Collaboration allows us to develop our understanding of when Arthrosamid is an option for our patients who are keen to keep active and avoid more invasive procedures.”
Mark Webb Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon l SWLEOC & Grosvenor Orthopaedic Partner

This fascinating day inspired a multitude of debates and discussions around optimal treatment options for patients suffering with knee arthritis. It was great to get various viewpoints from Physiotherapists, Sports and Exercise Medicine Consultants, Scientists and Orthopaedic Surgeons. In my experience with Arthrosamid to date over the last 14 months, I have seen some incredible responses in patients, for whom it has been genuinely life changing treatment. James Thing - Sport and Exercise Medicine Consultant, Founder | The Joint Injection Clinic