Current Research Programs
MOVE muscle, bone & joint health facilitates research largely through a partnership approach. We currently have the following active projects:
“What about young people?”
We're excited to announce our newest PhD Scholarship recipient Miss Danielle Berkovic. Miss Berkovic will be exploring the personal and financial burden of young people with arthritis, under the supervision of Associate Professor Ilana Ackerman at Monash University.
Osteoarthritis (OA) and rheumatoid arthritis (RA) are the two most common forms of arthritis in Australia. Arthritis is a disease that was thought to solely affect older people, but it is increasingly recognised that the condition also affects young people. Rising rates of obesity and sports injury are leading to growth in the number of young people with OA, and RA is most commonly seen in young women of childbearing age.
Young people face unique challenges in living with arthritis. Young people report that unpredictable arthritis flares, fatigue, and reduced energy and strength pose challenges in the workplace and young women in particular have flagged the issues they face with family planning.Young adulthood is an important transitional life phase, yet little research has examined the influence of arthritis on issues specific to young people, especially work experiences and career progression.
The key aim of this PhD project is to explore the experiences of young people aged 18-50 who are living with and managing arthritis. This will be achieved by interviewing 40 young people with arthritis to gain an in-depth perspective about the work-related and lifestyle-related impacts of arthritis. An online cost diary will also be developed to capture the out-of-pocket healthcare costs for young people living with arthritis. This is novel to the arthritis field; it is the first attempt to understand the personal financial burden of arthritis among young people. Importantly, this PhD project will develop recommendations around the personal, financial, and work-related impacts of arthritis for clinicians treating young people, to improve provision of patient-centred care.