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Exercise and Manual therapy Arthritis Research Trial (EMPART) for osteoarthritis of the hip: A Multicentre Randomised Controlled trial.French, Helen P; Cusack, Tara; Brennan, Ms Aisling; Caffrey, Ms Aoife; Conroy, Ronán; Cuddy, Ms Vanessa; Fitzgerald, Oliver M; Gilsenan, Ms Clare; Kane, David; O'Connell, Paul G; et al. (Archives of physical medicine and rehabilitation, 2012-10-16)OBJECTIVE: To determine the effectiveness of exercise therapy (ET) compared to ET with adjunctive manual therapy (ET+MT) for people with hip osteoarthritis (OA). A secondary aim was to identify if immediate commencement of ET or ET+MT was more beneficial than a 9 week waiting period for either intervention. DESIGN: Assessor-blind randomised controlled trial with 9 and 18 week follow-ups. SETTING: Four academic teaching hospitals, Dublin, Ireland. PARTICIPANTS: 131 patients with hip OA recruited from general practitioners, rheumatologists, orthopaedic surgeons, and other hospital consultants were randomised to one of three groups: ET (n=45), ET+MT (n=43) and wait-list control (n=43). INTERVENTIONS: Participants in both ET and ET+ MT groups received up to 8 treatments over 8 weeks. Control group participants were re-randomised into either ET or ET+MT group after 9 week follow-up. Their data were pooled with original treatment group data: ET (n=66) and ET+MT (n=65). MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: The primary outcome was the WOMAC physical function (PF) subscale. Secondary outcomes included physical performance, pain, hip range of motion (HROM), anxiety/depression, quality of life, medication usage, patient-perceived change and patient satisfaction. RESULTS: There was no significant difference in WOMAC PF between ET (n=66) and ET+MT (n=65) groups at 9 weeks (mean diff 0.09 (95% CI -4.41, 5.25)) or at 18 weeks (mean diff 0.42 (95% CI -3.98, 6.83)), or other outcomes, except 'patient satisfaction with outcome' which was higher in the ET+MT group (p=0.02). Improvements in WOMAC, HROM and patient-perceived change occurred in both treatment groups compared with the control group. CONCLUSION: Self-reported function, HROM and patient-perceived improvement occurred after an 8 week programme of ET for patients with hip OA MT as an adjunct provided no further benefit, except for higher patient satisfaction.