Methodological quality of randomized controlled trials of home-based rehabilitation in knee osteoarthritis: A cross-sectional survey

Evaluation of methodological quality of RCTs of home-based rehabilitation



knee osteoarthritis, remote rehabilitation, PEDro scale, CONSORT statement, quality of methodological


Background/Aim: This study aimed to evaluate the methodological quality of randomized controlled trials (RCTs) that examine home-based rehabilitation (HBR) trials for knee osteoarthritis (KOA) using the Physiotherapy Evidence Database (PEDro) scale and the nine methodology-related items of the Consolidated Standards of Reporting Trials (CONSORT) 2010 statement.

Methods: Three electronic databases were scanned from baseline to October 10, 2021. Two reviewers independently evaluated the articles according to the two inclusion criteria: (1) in individuals diagnosed with KOA, at least one group received home-based rehabilitation as a study intervention and (2) at least one group received a comparison intervention or no intervention. The methodological quality of the included studies (n=22) was assessed using the PEDro scale and nine items of the CONSORT 2010 statement.

Results: Among 1557 RCTs, 22 studies that fulfilled our criteria were included in the review. The mean PEDro scale score was 5.77 (1.54). This result reflects moderate methodological quality. Concealed allocation (6; 27.3%), blinding of subjects (4; 18.2%), and (0; 0.0%) of therapists associated with the methodological quality were not reported in most studies. An author’s expertise in epidemiology and/or statistics was 0.78 points (95% confidence interval [CI] 0.11–1.44), the multicenter study 0.94 points (95% CI: 0.19–1.68), and a one-unit increase in the total score of the CONSORT statement led to an increase in methodological quality of 0.55 points (95% CI: 0.34–0.76).

Conclusion: The methodological quality of most RCTs examining HBR in KOA that we included in our systematic review was moderate. The adherence of journals and authors to CONSORT checklists in reporting of studies may lead to an improvement in the methodological quality of future published studies.


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Meltem CM, Bayram U, Engin C. Methodological quality of randomized controlled trials of home-based rehabilitation in knee osteoarthritis: A cross-sectional survey: Evaluation of methodological quality of RCTs of home-based rehabilitation. J Surg Med [Internet]. 2023 Apr. 22 [cited 2024 Jun. 22];7(4):280-7. Available from: