Feasibility of Recruiting an Early Scottish Knee Osteoarthritis cohort (FRESKO)

Feasibility of Recruiting an Early Scottish Knee Osteoarthritis cohort (FRESKO)

Duration: Finishes June 2022
Funder: Chief Scientist’s Office of the Scottish Government
Chief investigator: Professor Gary Macfarlane
Other co-investigators: Professor Cosimo De Bari, Dr Rosemary Hollick
Study coordinator: Laura Moir

Osteoarthritis (OA) is the single most common cause of disability in adults, affecting 800,000 people in Scotland, with associated costs estimated as 1-2.5% of UK gross domestic product (March and Bachmeier, 1997). The knee is a frequent site of disease - there are 7,100 knee replacement operations carried out in Scotland annually and disabling knee osteoarthritis affects 1 in 10 people over 55 years in the UK. Current treatment options are limited to symptom relief and prosthetic joint replacement in end-stage disease.  Identifying the early phases of OA would allow targeting of individuals with secondary prevention. It would allow treatments to be offered that aim to modify tissue structure to enable lifelong maintenance of joint functionality, thereby preventing progression of joint damage. Our future plan is to conduct a five-year study to establish a cohort of people with early knee OA and to address key scientific aspects for the diagnosis and management.

Before we can develop a major grant application on early knee OA, we need to:

  • Determine the most efficient method for identification and recruitment of participants
  • Quantify the proportion of people approached who are eligible and agree to participate
  • Determine the acceptability of the evaluation procedures during the recruitment study visit and the time required to recruit individual people
  • Describe the clinical and self-reported characteristics of persons recruited.


Further information

Information for participants

You can download Participant Information Sheets which give further details about the stages of the study:

Study Team

Chief Investigator


Study coordinator

Data protection

Privacy notice

The University of Aberdeen are the sponsor for this study based in the United Kingdom. We will be using information from you and your medical records in order to undertake this study and will act as the data controller for this study. This means that we are responsible for looking after your information and using it properly. The University of Aberdeen will keep identifiable information about you for a minimum of 5 years after the study has finished.

Your rights to access, change or move your information are limited, as we need to manage your information in specific ways in order for the research to be reliable and accurate. If you withdraw from the study, we will keep the information about you that we have already obtained. To safeguard your rights, we will use the minimum personally-identifiable information possible.

You can find out more about how we use your information http://www.abdn.ac.uk/privacy and/or by contacting Iain Gray, University Data Protection Officer dpo@abdn.ac.uk.

The University of Aberdeen will use your name, NHS number and contact details to contact you about the research study, and make sure that relevant information about the study is recorded for your care, and to oversee the quality of the study. Individuals from the University of Aberdeen and regulatory organisations may look at your medical and research records to check the accuracy of the research study. NHS Grampian will pass these details to University of Aberdeen along with the information collected from you and your medical records. The only people in University of Aberdeen who will have access to information that identifies you will be people who need to contact you in regards to the study or audit the data collection process. The people who analyse the information will not be able to identify you and will not be able to find out your name, NHS number or contact details.

The University of Aberdeen will keep identifiable information about you from this study for a minimum of 5 years after the study has finished.

Contact Details

Study co-ordinator