Osteoarthritis of the Knee Patient Education

Overview of Osteoarthritis of the Knee

Osteoarthritis, also known as degenerative joint disease, is the most common type of arthritis. This appears when joint cartilage erodes away over time. It is generally progressive, but can be stemmed by taking management steps. With the cushioning cartilage diminished, bones rub against each other causing pain swelling, restriction of motion, stiffness and bone spur formation.

More than 27 million Americans suffer from osteoarthritis and the knee is the most typical area affected, with men less at risk than women

Risk factors include:

  • Injury
  • Infection of the knee
  • Age (over 45)
  • Obesity/Overweight
  • Hereditary (family history)
  • Occupational (using repetitive squatting, kneeling and weight lifting)
  • Suffering from other conditions (osteoarthritis can occur in those with rheumatoid arthritis, overabundance of iron, growth hormone excess)

Symptoms include:

  • Engorgement
  • Pain upon exertion
  • Crackling or creaking sounds with knee movement
  • Knee stiffness
  • Decrease in mobility
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