What is osteoarthritis (OA)?

Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common form of arthritis, and is characterized by the breakdown of join cartilage- leading to pain, stiffness, and disability. It is sometimes referred to as degenerative joint disease or “wear and tear” arthritis. OA mostly occurs in the hands, hips, and knees. It is especially common among older people. It may progress quickly, but for most people, joint damage develops gradually over years.


Risk factors for developing osteoarthritis include: 

  • Getting older
  • Being overweight or obese
  • Joint injury or overuse
  • Genetic defects


Warning signs of OA include:

  • Joint stiffness after getting out of bed or sitting for a long period
  • Swelling or tenderness in joint(s)
  • Crunching feeling or sound of bone rubbing bone


Diagnosis. There is no single test to diagnose OA, multiple methods are used to diagnose and rule out other issues:

  • Medical history
  • Physical exam
  • X rays
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging (MRI)
  • Other tests (blood tests, exams of fluid in the joints)


Treatment of osteoarthritis depends on the needs of the patients, but should do the following:

  • Improve joint function
  • Maintain a healthy body weight
  • Control pain
  • Develop a healthy lifestyle


  • Estimated to affect 630 million people worldwide
  • About 27 million people in the United States have OA
  • Affects approximately 10% of men and 13% of women age 60 and older
  • Before age 45, more men than women have osteoarthritis
about osteoarthritis (OA)


  •  "Osteoarthritis Fact Sheet." Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 02 Feb. 2017. Web. 10 Apr. 2017.
  •  National Institutes of Health. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, n.d. Web. 10 Apr. 2017.
  •  "Osteoarthritis - National Library of Medicine - PubMed Health." National Center for Biotechnology Information. U.S. National Library of Medicine, n.d. Web. 10 Apr. 2017.



Join the community!

You must be a member of healtheo360 in order to view this group

Register with Email Address

Already a member? Click here to login

healtheo360 believes strongly in user privacy.