Development of an occupational advice intervention for patients undergoing lower limb arthroplasty (the OPAL study)

Paul Baker, Carol Coole, Avril ER Drummond, Catriona McDaid, Sayeed Khan, Louise Thomson, Catherine Hewitt, Iain McNamara, David McDonald, Judith Fitch

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7 Citations (Scopus)
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There are an increasing number of patients of working age undergoing hip and knee replacements. Currently there is variation in the advice and support given about sickness absence, recovery to usual activities and return to work after these procedures. Earlier, sustainable, return to work improves the health of patients and benefits their employers and society. An intervention that encourages and supports early recovery to usual activities, including work, has the potential to reduce the health and socioeconomic burden of hip and knee replacements.
A two-phase research programme delivered over 27 months will be used to develop and subsequently test the feasibility of an occupational advice intervention to facilitate return to work and usual activities in patients undergoing lower limb arthroplasty. The 2 phases will incorporate a six-stage intervention mapping process:
Phase 1: Intervention mapping stages 1–3:
Needs assessment (including rapid evidence synthesis, prospective cohort analysis and structured stakeholder interviews)
Identification of intended outcomes and performance objectives
Selection of theory-based methods and practical strategies
Phase 2: Intervention mapping stages 4–6:
Development of components and materials for the occupational advice intervention using a modified Delphi process
Adoption and implementation of the intervention
Evaluation and feasibility testing
The study will be undertaken in four National Health Service (NHS) hospitals in the United Kingdom and two Higher Education Institutions.
OPAL (Occupational advice for Patients undergoing Arthroplasty of the Lower limb) aims to develop an occupational advice intervention to support early recovery to usual activities including work, which is tailored to the requirements of patients undergoing hip and knee replacements. The developed intervention will then be assessed with a specific focus on evaluating its feasibility as a potential trial intervention to improve speed of recovery to usual activities including work.
Trial registration
The study was registered retrospectively with the International Standard Randomised Controlled Trials Number (ISRCTN): 27426982 (Date 20/12/2016) and the International prospective register of systematic reviews (PROSPERO): CRD42016045235 (Date 04/08/2016).
Original languageEnglish
Article number504
JournalBMC Health Services Research
Publication statusPublished - 28 Jun 2018


  • occupational advice
  • knee
  • intervention design
  • arthroplasty
  • hip
  • intervention mapping
  • prospective studies
  • humans
  • male
  • arthroplasty, replacement, knee/rehabilitation
  • return to work
  • counseling
  • adult
  • arthroplasty, replacement, hip/rehabilitation
  • female
  • retrospective studies
  • hospitals/statistics & numerical data
  • occupational health
  • United Kingdom
  • delivery of health care/methods
  • lower extremity
  • sick leave
  • cohort studies

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Policy


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