The risk of post-traumatic osteoarthritis (PTOA) substantially increases following joint injury. Research efforts should focus on investigating the efficacy of preventative strategies in high quality randomized controlled trials (RCT). The objective of these OARSI RCT recommendations is to inform the design, conduct and analytical approaches to RCTs evaluating the preventative effect of joint injury prevention strategies. Recommendations regarding the design, conduct, and reporting of RCTs evaluating injury prevention interventions were established based on the consensus of nine researchers internationally with expertise in epidemiology, injury prevention and/or osteoarthritis (OA). Input and resultant consensus was established through teleconference, face to face and email correspondence over a 1 year period. Recommendations for injury prevention RCTs include context specific considerations regarding the research question, research design, study participants, randomization, baseline characteristics, intervention, outcome measurement, analysis, implementation, cost evaluation, reporting and future considerations including the impact on development of PTOA. Methodological recommendations for injury prevention RCTs are critical to informing evidence-based practice and policy decisions in health care, public health and the community. Recommendations regarding the interpretation and conduct of injury prevention RCTs will inform the highest level of evidence in the field. These recommendations will facilitate between study comparisons to inform best practice in injury prevention that will have the greatest public health impact.
Hamstring injuries are the most common injury sustained by elite Australian football players and result in substantial costs because of missed training time, unavailability for matches and lost player payments. Evidence to support proposed risk factors for hamstring injury is generally lacking, limiting the development of appropriate prevention strategies. To identify intrinsic risk factors for hamstring injury at the elite level of Australian football. A prospective cohort of 222 players underwent baseline measurement in the form of a self-report questionnaire and a musculo-skeletal screen during the pre-season period of the 2002 Australian football season. Injury surveillance and exposure data were collected for the full season. Logistic regression analyses were used to identify independent predictors of hamstring injury in this group of players. Thirty-one players sustained a hamstring injury. A past history (previous 12 months) of hamstring injury and increasing age were found to be independent predictors of hamstring injury. Older players and those with a previous history of hamstring injury are target groups for further research and implementation of injury prevention strategies. Restricted ankle dorsiflexion range of movement warrants consideration in the development of prevention programs for hamstring injury.