GOPO Health - The Unseen Epidemic

In a compelling campaign that brought the unseen struggles of joint pain to the forefront, Dr. Dawn Harper, a renowned TV doctor and GP known from “Embarrassing Bodies,” collaborated with Elizabeth Joseph, the Menopause Guinea Pig, to illuminate the hidden impact of joint pain on individuals’ physical, mental, and emotional well-being.

Campaign Overview:

Dr. Dawn Harper and Elizabeth Joseph embarked on a mission to raise awareness about the pervasive yet often overlooked issue of musculoskeletal pain, particularly as it affects a wide demographic, including young adults and women experiencing menopause. The initiative aimed to highlight the daily challenges faced by sufferers, the dependency on medication, and the broader implications on personal and professional life.

Key Insights:

  • Dependency on Medication: Over half of those suffering from joint pain (53%) rely on prescribed treatments or painkillers, revealing a significant dependency that underscores the need for alternative pain management solutions.
  • Young Adults Affected: Contrary to common belief, 18% of young adults aged 18-34 experience daily joint pain, indicating that joint pain is not just an issue for older generations.
  • Professional Life and Mental Health Impact: The campaign revealed that 22% of sufferers report a negative impact on their careers, while 43% acknowledge a detrimental effect on their mental health, showcasing the extensive reach of joint pain beyond physical symptoms.
  • The Menopause Connection: Elizabeth Joseph shared her personal journey, highlighting that 40% of women endure joint pain due to menopause, emphasizing the need for targeted awareness and interventions.

Media Engagement:

  • With a total of 16 media opportunities reaching an audience of over 12 million, the campaign successfully spread its message through various platforms, including significant coverage on national and local radio stations.
  • The involvement of GOPO® Joint Health in commissioning a survey added a strong factual basis to the campaign, providing critical data that underpinned the discussions and highlighted the urgency of addressing joint pain.

Campaign Outcomes:

  • Increased Awareness: The campaign achieved its goal of shining a spotlight on the silent epidemic of joint pain, educating the public on its extensive impacts and challenging misconceptions about its prevalence.
  • Highlighting Alternative Management Strategies: By emphasizing the preference among sufferers for lifestyle and dietary changes over medication, Dr. Harper and Elizabeth Joseph advocated for a more holistic approach to managing joint pain.
  • Empowering Sufferers: Through their personal stories and professional insights, the campaign provided valuable information and support to those affected, encouraging them to seek help and explore non-pharmacological pain management options.


The joint campaign by Dr. Dawn Harper and Elizabeth Joseph served as a powerful catalyst for change, drawing attention to the complex issues surrounding joint pain and its management. By combining personal testimonies with solid research and media engagement, the campaign not only raised awareness but also offered hope and guidance to millions struggling in silence. Through their efforts, Dr. Harper and Elizabeth Joseph have underscored the importance of recognizing joint pain as a significant health concern that demands a comprehensive and compassionate response.