Non-Inflammatory Musculoskeletal

What we do

The Non-Inflammatory Musculoskeletal Disorders group aim to improve the treatment and outcomes of people with common disorders such as osteoarthritis, tendinitis and multisite joint pain (the commonest presentation of people over 50, representing a mixture of osteoarthritis and tendinitis affecting multiple joints). These common problems are increasingly widespread in our ageing and unfit community, have a massive impact in terms of pain, loss of function and life impact on individuals; and contribute to 20% of GP consultations. They feature commonly in people with multimorbidities. Pain is the commonest presenting symptom and a major focus of our research. We are experiencd clinical trialists.

Our focus includes:

  • Understanding current treatments, especially the pharmacoepidemiology of therapies, using big data sources such as CPRD.
  • Understanding the natural history and trajectories of these diseases at different anatomical sites including knee and hip.
  • Using imaging to better characterise osteoarthritis pathogenesis and its progression. We have strong collaborations with Imorphics, an imaging company who provide quantitative assessment of MRI, and have applied this work to large OA datasets.
  • Understanding structure-pain relationships in osteoarthritis and shoulder pain.
  • Assessing novel and re-purposed therapies for osteoarthritis and related conditions.

We collaborate extensively on:

  • Orthopaedic interventions and care pathways (Professor Hemant Pandit, Mr Martin Stone, Mr Paul Cowling LTHT).
  • Health Services Research with the Leeds Institute of Health Sciences (Professor Jenny Hewison) and the School of Healthcare (Professors Gretl McHugh and Anne-Maree Keenan).
  • Biomechanics and biotribology of joints for development of novel interventions with the Institute of Medical and Biological Engineering (Professors Ruth Wilcox, John Fisher and Eileen Ingham).


Key publications

Key publications our team has contributed to

  1. Dube B, Bowes MA, Hensor EMA, Barr A, Kingsbury SR, Conaghan PG. The relationship between two different measures of osteoarthritis bone pathology, bone marrow lesions and 3D bone shape: data from the Osteoarthritis Initiative. Osteoarthritis Cartilage. 2018 Oct;26(10):1333-7.
  2. Tran G, Cowling P, Smith T, Bury J, Lucas A, Barr A, Kingsbury SR, Conaghan PG. What imaging detected pathologies are associated with shoulder symptoms and their persistence? A systematic literature review. Arthritis Care Res (Hoboken). 2018 Aug;70(8):1169-84.
  3. Haj-Mirzaian A, Guermazi A, Roemer FW, Bowes MA, Conaghan PG, Demehri S. Bisphosphonates intake and its association with changes of periarticular bone area and three-dimensional shape: data from the Osteoarthritis Initiative (OAI). Osteoarthritis Cartilage. 2018 Apr;26(4):564-8.
  4. Conaghan PG, Hunter DJ, Cohen SB, Kraus VB, Berenbaum F, Lieberman JR, Jones DG, Spitzer AI, Jevsevar DS, Katz NP, Burgess DJ, Lufkin J, Johnson JR, Bodick N; FX006-2014-008 Participating Investigators. Effects of a Single Intra-Articular Injection of a Microsphere Formulation of Triamcinolone Acetonide on Knee Osteoarthritis Pain: A Double-Blinded, Randomized, Placebo-Controlled, Multinational Study. J Bone Joint Surg Am. 2018 Apr 18;100(8):666-677
  5. Kingsbury SR, Tharmanathan P, Keding A, Ronaldson SJ, Grainger A, Wakefield RJ, Arundel C, Birrell F, Doherty M, Vincent T, Watt FE, Dziedzic K, O'Neill TW, Arden NK, Scott DL, Dickson J, Garrood T, Green M, Menon A, Sheeran T, Torgerson D, Conaghan PG. Hydroxychloroquine Effectiveness in Reducing Symptoms of Hand Osteoarthritis: A Randomized Trial. Ann Intern Med. 2018 Mar 20;168(6):385-395.
  6. Conaghan PG, Cohen SB, Berenbaum F, Lufkin J, Johnson JR, Bodick N. Phase 2b trial of a novel extended-release microsphere formulation of triamcinolone acetonide for intra-articular injection in knee osteoarthritis. Arthritis Rheumatol. 2018 Feb;70(2):204-11.
  7. Dube B, Bowes MA, Kingsbury SR, Hensor EM, Muzumdar S, Conaghan PG. Where does meniscal damage progress most rapidly? An analysis using three-dimensional shape models on data from the Osteoarthritis Initiative. Osteoarthritis Cartilage. 2018 Jan;26(1):62-71.
  8. Bierma-Zeinstra SMA, Brew J, Stoner K, Wilson R, Kilbourn A, Conaghan PG. A new lipid formulation of low dose ibuprofen shows non-inferiority to high dose standard ibuprofen: the flare study (flaring arthralgia relief evaluation in episodic flaring knee pain) - a randomised double-blind study. Osteoarthritis Cartilage. 2017 Dec;25(12):1942-51.
  9. Smith TO, Zou K, Abdullah N, Chen X, Kingsbury SR, Doherty M, Zhang W, Conaghan PG. Does flare trial design affect the effect size of non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs in symptomatic osteoarthritis? A systematic review and meta-analysis. Ann Rheum Dis. 2016 Nov;75(11):1971-8.
  10. Kingsbury SR, Corp N, Watt FE, Felson DT, O'Neill TW, Holt CA, Jones RK, Conaghan PG, Arden NK. Harmonising data collection from osteoarthritis studies to enable stratification: recommendations on core data collection from an Arthritis Research UK clinical studies group. Rheumatology (Oxford). 2016 Aug;55(8):1394-402.


Who we are


Professor Philip Conaghan

View our team members