Osteoarthritis part 1
HELLO I AM DR. SUGAR, YOUR INTERNET DOCTOR, HERE TO GIVE YOU YOUR DOSE OF MEDICAL INPIRATION FOR THE DAY. OUR TOPIC IS Osteoarthritis- - SO LETS GET STARTED SHALL WE
Osteoarthritis is the most common type of arthritis and is seen especially among older people. Healthcare professionals may also refer to it as DJD, degenerative joint disease or osteoarthrosis as well.
People with osteoarthritis usually have joint pain and some movement limitations. As you are aware, there are other types of arthritis as well like rheumatoid arthritis. But unlike the other types, osteoarthritis affects only the joints. Other parts of the body like the eyes, skin, lungs and blood vessels are NOT affected.
As I said, osteoarthritis is the most common type of arthritis. According to the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases an estimated 27 million Americans age 25 and older have osteoarthritis. According to Centers for Disease Control and Prevention osteoarthritis accounts for 55% of all arthritis-related hospitalizations.
The incidence increases with age. The National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases says that by 2030, 20 percent of Americans – or about 72 million people - will have passed their 65th birthday and will be at high risk for the disease. The risk is high in men before 45 years of age and in women after 45 years of age. Though you might be thinking that this is a disease that is common in older people, it can also affect people who are younger especially those who have a previous joint injury, a joint malformation, or a genetic defect in joint cartilage. You are at an increased risk of developing osteoarthritis if you are obese or if you do work that puts undue stress on your joints.
If you become affected by osteoarthritis you will have symptoms like joint pain and stiffness. It usually affects weight-bearing joints like your knee joints. But it is not limited to these joints alone and it may affect other joints as well including those of the hands, spine and hips.
A joint is a point where two or more bones are connected. Except for the skull and pelvis, joints are meant for movement and to prevent shock during movement. A special tissue called cartilage carries out this second function. Cartilage is a very smooth structure that lines the joint spaces and functions as a shock absorber. As part of aging and when excess stress is placed on particular joints, the cartilage may undergo degeneration. A degenerated cartilage makes the joint surface rough and this causes pain in the joints during movement. The joints may also become stiff. If you are obese, this degenerative process occurs at a faster rate.
Once the degenerative process sets in, new bone formation occurs along the sides of the joint. These new bones, which project in to the joint space, are called spurs. During the process of wear and tear on the joint, the lining of your joint starts to secrete more joint fluid and this excess fluid will then accumulate. When this happens, your joints become painful, stiff and also swollen.
I am Doctor Sugar and I want to invite you to join me for part 2 of my blog series on Understanding Osteoarthritis. In the next section, I will discuss what may happen when you visit your doctor and some of the tests for osteoarthritis. Make sure to check it out. I’ll see you there!! Giving You Your Dose of MEDICAL INSPIRATION
TO YOUR TOTAL WELLNESS!
3.National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases
The information contained in this blog is not medical advice.
Please consult your medical doctor before making any decisions
or taking any actions on your health or the health of your family.