Osteoarthritis (OA) or degenerative arthritis is a joint disease caused by cartilage loss in a joint which is still the most common chronic condition of the joints. OA can affect any synovial joints, but it occurs most often in knees, hips, lower back and neck, small joints of the fingers. It occurs in case of cartilage deformation and limited or lack of regeneration leading with decreasing of synovial viscosity fluid accordingly.
There are some typical important symptoms that should warn you to talk to a health care professional about osteoarthritis disease:
- Pain: The most obvious symptom is pain. Typically increased with activity, decreased with rest. As the disease progresses, pain begins to occur with milder activities. Pain may be in one part of the body or in many different parts.
- Swelling: The skin over the affected joint may become red and swollen, feeling warm to the touch.
- Stiffness: Joint stiffness might be most noticeable especially when waking up in the morning or after a long period of inactivity.
- Losing functional ability: You may not be able to move the joint due to the pain and hurt.
Some common risk factors that linked to osteoarthritis are as follows:
- Aging over 50 years (female or male) – The risk increases with age.
- Excessive weight – The more weight you gain, the greater your risk of osteoarthritis. The increased weight puts stress on weight-bearing joints such as your hips and knees.
- Joint injuries – Some joint injuries, occurred years ago and seemingly healed, can increase the risk of osteoarthritis.
- Genetics & bone deformities – Some genetic characteristics and disorders such as deformed legs or knees can cause people to develop osteoarthritis.
- Repeated stress on the joint – Habitual activities, such as kneeling, side-knee bending, squatting can develop osteoarthritis.
The main treatments for the symptoms of osteoarthritis include:
- Physical therapy
- Pain medications
- Losing weight
- Knee surgery
Knee osteoarthritis treatment may include nonsurgical treatments, injections, and surgery. Mostly, nonsurgical treatments are tried first, surgery also may be considered when other treatments have been tried and have not adequately relieved symptoms.