June 25, 2008

Osteoarthritis – Causes and Risk Factors

Posted in Category : Bone, Joint & Muscles Disorders

One of the most commonly found arthritis which occurs in most people is Osteoarthritis. This is a joint disease which is degenerative which means that as you age your joints begin to wear down also. The cartilage which is present in your joints tends to wear out over a period of time and this is responsible for the joints being affected. This is one disease which can affect any of the joints in your body like your hands, hips, spine, fingers and knees. Though it is known to affect only a single joint there are cases where it can affect many joints like the fingers.

The medical fraternity is still looking for solutions and remedies for this disease and has still not found one though serious research on the subject is still going on. Osteoarthritis gets worse as you age and can cause tremendous pain and immobility if it too severe.

These are some of the factors which can make people prone to Osteoarthritis like Old Age, Sex, Bone deformities, Joint injuries, Obesity and any other diseases which can affect the bones and joints. These are important factors that can contribute to anyone who is prone to this disease. You will find that normally people under the age of 40 do not complain of this disease. It is only after 40 that the disease slowly sets in and advances as we grow older. It has been found that women are more susceptible to osteoarthritis than men and the reason for this is till unknown. People with defective bone formation or malformed joints are also at risk of getting this disease. If you have been playing sports or even had an accident at some point in your life, the joint injuries if any can also cause osteoarthritis as you age.

Being overweight or obese is also another factor that contributes to osteoarthritis. This is because the excess weight which the body carries causes strain in the joints especially the knees and that’s why many obese people complain of osteoarthritis in their knees. People who suffer from bone and joint infections like gout, Paget’s disease, rheumatoid arthritis and septic arthritis are also at risk of osteoarthritis.

Some of the symptoms which you should look out for to check if you are prone to osteoarthritis are pain in any joint especially after a period of remaining inactive, tenderness, feeling of stiffness as you awake, swelling of your joints, some sounds when you move your joints or even bone spurs. Medication and exercise are the only ways which can relieve you of this disease.