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This article is the authors' final version prior to publication in Physical Therapy in Sport, Volume 55, May 2022, Pages 218-228. Embargoed until June 1, 2023.

The published version is available at Copyright © 2022 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.


Objectives: To compare beliefs of physical therapists (PTs) who read the clinical practice guideline (CPG) for the management of individuals with patellofemoral pain (PFP) to those who have not read the CPG.

Design: Cross-sectional study.

Setting: Online survey.

Participants: 494 currently licensed/registered PTs or physiotherapists.

Main Outcome Measures: Respondents answered Likert-based or open-ended questions regarding the diagnosis, prognosis, risk factors, and management of individuals with PFP, as well as confidence for managing individuals with PFP, especially the ability to identify beneficial and non-beneficial interventions. We dichotomized responses into participants who read (READERS) and did not read (NonREADERS) the CPG.

Results: Most respondents held inaccurate beliefs about risk factors and prognosis; however, READERS' beliefs better aligned with the CPG than NonREADERS (P < 0.01). Most respondents correctly agreed that hip and knee exercise was the recommended treatment strategy; yet NonREADERS believed in implementing unsupported passive treatments (P < 0.01). READERS reported greater confidence in managing individuals with PFP, delivering evidence-based interventions, identifying less beneficial treatments, and locating evidence-based resources than NonREADERS (P < 0.01).

Conclusions: While READERS and NonREADERS held accurate beliefs for exercise-based treatment for PFP, greater knowledge translation is needed to counter inaccurate beliefs regarding risk factors, prognostic factors, and passive treatments.

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