Brain imaging to investigate chronic pain in knee osteoarthritis


We are interested in better understanding pain in patients with knee osteoarthritis. We will study both the joint and the brain with magnetic resonance imaging (one scan of the knee, one scan of the brain). This will enable us to better describe joint degeneration and how it is related to pain as well as how the brain changes with chronic pain due to knee osteoarthritis. We will further examine pain and sensory processing with tactile (touch) stimuli. To best understand these changes in patients, we also need healthy, pain-free, arthritis-free control participants.


Currently recruiting participants: Yes

Eligible gender: Male, Female, Transgender, Other

Eligible ages: 40 to 75

Accepts healthy participants: Yes

Inclusion criteria:

We are looking to age and sex match with our patients who have knee osteoarthritis.

General requirements:
1. age 40-75 years
2. ability to understand English to provide written informed consent
3. no chronic pain
4. no arthritis (in any joint)
5. be able to have an MRI (magnetic resonance imaging) - this includes no contraindications to MRI such as metallic implants, clips, etc or have claustrophobia that will prevent you from lying still in the scanner.

Exclusion criteria:

1) metal implants in the knee or previous fracture of the knee
2) an inability to speak, understand and read English
3) a cognitive impairment preventing informed consent
4) have a physical impairment preventing participants from remaining motionless during MRI or brain scans
5) have a significant mental health disorder such as psychosis or PTSD
6) are taking certain medications - specifically those for chronic pain
7) have arthritis in another joint
8) significant disease comorbidities (e.g., diabetes, epilepsy, cardiovascular disease)
9) have any other reasons for ineligibility for MRI scanning


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Method of contact

Additional information

Contact information

Ashley Harris - Sarah Manske -

Principal investigator:

Ashley Harris

Clinical trial: