Osteoarthritis Online Medical Reference — covering Eular recommendations for the management of osteoarthritis through Treatment. Wilke and John Carey of the Cleveland Clinic.
Your complete Medical Education portal. Osteoarthritis, which is the most common form of arthritis in the United States and other Western countries, is increasing in incidence as the population ages, and it is likely to rise further with the obesity epidemic. Significant disability and loss of function are associated with this disease, and its management is an enormous cost to the health care system. Progress in prevention and treatment has been slow, related in part to the insidious onset and generally slow progression of the disease.
As a result, clinical trials can take many years to show a significant disease benefit. Therefore, despite its being the most prevalent form of arthritis, few long-term clinical trials have studied the therapeutic outcomes. Rather than one uniform disease, osteoarthritis may be a primary or an idiopathic phenomenon, or it may be secondary to some other disorder. Osteoarthritis is also commonly seen as a secondary form of arthritis in patients with other inflammatory arthritides, such as rheumatoid arthritis. Mechanical and genetic factors play roles in the development of this disease as well.
Histologic evidence clearly shows ongoing inflammation and cartilage destruction in osteoarthritis, although not to the same degree as in other arthritides, such as rheumatoid arthritis. 55 and 78 years of age. Women are affected more than men. Hip osteoarthritis is more common in Western populations, suggesting that race and environmental factors might also be important. Understanding the metabolic pathways at the molecular level has greatly enhanced our understanding of the tissue factors involved. Although the role of inflammation in osteoarthritis has been unclear for a long time, significant progress has been made in more recent years.