Osteoarthritis (OA) is a degenerative disease of the joints and spine that usually affects middle aged to elderly patients. This disease is slowly progressive and involves the entire joint and is characterized by breakdown of the cartilage, bony changes, deterioration of the tendons and ligaments and some degree of inflammation of the joint lining called the synovium and these changes are irreversible. This is the most common type of arthritis and is the leading cause of disability in the elderly. Symptoms include joint pain, stiffness, swelling, cracking/grinding noises and decreased in joint function. OA affects people of all races and both sexes and most commonly occurs in patients 40 years and older. Obestiy, age, and overuse of a joint can increase your risk of developing OA.
It is diagnosed based on symptoms , physical exam , and imaging like X-rays. There are a variety of treatment options including medications, physical therapy, diet, and supplements.