Osteoarthritis Patient Education Guide Overview

Osteoarthritis, also known as degenerative joint disease, is the most common type of arthritis. Over time, osteoarthritis appears as joint cartilage erodes. It is generally progressive, but can be stemmed by taking management steps.

Engorged, puffy, creaky joints are typical of osteoarthritis. Oftentimes, the joints affected include the shoulder, elbow, hand, foot and ankle, hip, spine and knee. Osteoarthritis sufferers note that symptoms start later in life and are slowly progress, starting on one side of the body and spreading to the other side over time. In general, whole-body symptoms do not occur in patients.

When painful joints are inflamed, the physician must differentiate osteoarthritis from other forms of arthritis (i.e. rheumatoid arthritis).


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