Decreases in pain, depression, anxiety reported with digital program Otesanya David March 29, 2022

Decreases in pain, depression, anxiety reported with digital program

Decreases in pain, depression, anxiety reported with digital program


March 28, 2022

2 min read

Krauss and Wang are employed by Hinge Health. Bailey reports no relevant financial disclosures. Please see the study for all other authors’ relevant financial disclosures.

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Rates of chronic pain, depression and anxiety decreased and were sustained over 12 months following the use of an app-based program from Hinge Health, the company announced.

Chronic pain was reduced by 51%, depression by 36% and anxiety by 20%, a joint study from researchers at the University of California, San Francisco, and the University of Rhode Island, reported.

Source: Adobe Stock.
Source: Adobe Stock.

“We’re excited to share the industry’s first peer-reviewed study that measures chronic pain improvement at 12 months and demonstrates long-term benefits of a digital [chronic musculoskeletal] program that uniquely combines clinical care teams with advanced technology and data,” Jeff Krauss, MD, chief medical officer at Hinge Health, said in a company release. “The study is significant since it demonstrates both improved clinical outcomes and reduced health care utilization over the long term.”

Grace Wang, MPH, PhD, senior director of clinical research at Hinge Health, and colleagues enrolled 2,570 participants and assessed pain, function, depression and anxiety after 3, 6 and 12 months. Some participants used a digital program that delivered exercise therapy, education and health coaching through playlists, each of which contained three to five exercises specific to back, knee, shoulder, hip or neck pain. Participants also were given more than 60 mobility activities that included stretching, strengthening and balancing tasks.

According to study results published in BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders, the odds ratio of achieving a minimally clinically important difference in pain improvement for the digital-app participants compared with nonparticipants was 1.97 after 3 months (95% CI, 1.28-3.02), 1.44 after 6 months (95% CI, 0.91-2.25) and 2.06 after 12 months (95% CI, 1.38-3.08).

For those with moderate or severe depression at baseline, the authors reported lower odds at 3 months (OR = 0.27; 95% CI, 0.12-0.60), at 6 months (OR = 0.41; 95% CI, 0.18-0.91) and at 12 months (OR = 0.35; 95% CI, 0.19-0.65).

Likewise, those with anxiety at baseline had lower odds at 3 months (OR = 0.21; 95% CI, 0.09-0.43), at 6 months (OR = 0.15; 95% CI, 0.07-0.31) and at 12 months (OR = 0.34; 95% CI, 0.19-0.61).

“This exciting research examining outcomes data from Hinge Health’s promising digital [chronic musculoskeletal] program provides new and potentially transformative insights on the long-term effectiveness of holistic digital care in treating chronic pain,” Jeannie Bailey, PhD, study co-author and assistant professor of orthopedic surgery at the University of California, San Francisco, said in the release.


Business Wire. New study demonstrates that Hinge Health delivers sustained 1-year improvement in pain, anxiety, depression and function. Published March 23, 2022. Accessed March 28, 2022.

Wang G, et al. BMC Musculoskelet Disord. 2022;doi:10.1186/s12891-022-05188-x.


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