The Signs of Osteoarthritis
Osteoarthritis affects approximately 27 million Americans. More women over 50 have the disease compared to men the same age, and most individuals over 70 have some symptoms. However, even those in their 20s and 30s can be affected if the following factors exist:
1. OA is hereditary
Individuals with existing joint abnormalities and those who suffer defective cartilage, may suffer deterioration of joints and develop osteoarthritis.
Excessive impact on the joints increases the risk for osteoarthritis, particularly on weight-bearing joints like the knees, hips, and spine. This is why losing excess weight can help prevent osteoarthritis and joint damage.
3. A break or injury
A prior injury or damage in and around the joints can increase the chances of developing OA, especially in the knees and spine.
4. Repetitive stress
Due to joints overuse or an actual repetitive stress injury in athletes and in those who work in manual labor-type jobs
5. Preexisting conditions
Such as Gout and Rheumatoid Arthritis can lead to the development of osteoarthritis.
The following symptoms of osteoarthritis vary and show themselves gradually, worsening as the condition develops:
- Joint swelling, aching and pain, especially following activity
- Stiff pain, especially first thing in the morning or following long periods of inactivity as the joint warms up
- Bony fragments around the joints, resulting from bones rubbing together and causing a crackling sound in the joint