By: Samantha deCastro
This particular arthritis is the most common joint disease worldwide. It usually involves joints that weight bear, such as knees and hips, but can also be seen in the spine and extremities.
OA is one of the most common we see in the clinic, especially in the aging population. Typically onset will begin in the 40’s. It is characterized by progressive degeneration of the joints, as well as a decrease in cartilage.
OA can be broken down into two types:
- Primary: due to wear and tear or some sort of structural issue
- Secondary: this one is caused by metabolic disturbances, joint hemorrhage, genetics and so on.
Regardless of the type, the progression follow the same pattern:
- Degeneration begins, from trauma of some sort. The joint fluid loses its viscosity, cartilage begins to become fatigued form the abnormal wear. Enzymes that destroy cartilage start to increase
- Fissures and cracks start to develop, and parts of cartilage can eve break off causing “joint mice”
- The bones is not exposed due to cartilage loss, instability happens, and the bone will try and grow to compensate for this. Scar tissue and bony fusion is possible.
Pain in OA comes from swelling of the joint capsule, inflammation of bursa, muscle spasms, and even torn meniscus or other fibrocartilage based parts of the joint.
What puts you at risk for osteoarthritis?
- Diseases like Gout or CPPD
- Previous Rheumatoid arthritis
- Disease that cause neuropathy like diabetes
If you are experiencing a gradual onset of deep, achy joint pain that just won't seem to go away and gets better with mild activity, you may have OA. Schedule an assessment with one of our chiropractors or physiotherapists today. Early intervention is key to slow down progression of this condition!