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A Short Guide to Osteoarthritis of the Knee

Osteoarthritis is the most common type of peripheral joint arthritis, and it is a common cause of disability. Studies show that this disorder affects almost 9 million people and can greatly reduce a person’s quality of life. In particular, osteoarthritis of the knee affects 18 percent of people over the age of 45, which equates to around 4.1 million people. Osteoarthritis of the knee can be incredibly debilitating and can reduce mobility. Here is a short guide to osteoarthritis of the knee and the different ways you can cope with it.

What Exactly is Osteoarthritis?

This disorder can affect various body parts, including the feet, hand, hip, and knee joints. It is a chronic musculoskeletal condition that can cause your joints to feel stiff and painful. In the worst-case scenario, it can reduce one’s ability to participate in everyday activities.

What Causes Osteoarthritis?

Although the exact reason behind the development of this disorder is unknown, research shows that osteoarthritis is more prevalent in females, older adults, and people who are obese. In addition, it is commonly accepted that your age and family history can increase your risk of developing it. Previous joint injuries and other health conditions can also increase your risk. For more information about osteoarthritis and other musculoskeletal issues, visit


Symptoms can vary from person to person. Some may experience nothing at all, others might have stiff joints, while others might experience high levels of pain. People with knee osteoarthritis often experience a variety of symptoms. A stiff, aching feeling, pain in the affected area, and swollen, inflamed knee are all signs of the disorder. Additionally, muscle weakness, tenderness, and a feeling of instability are also symptoms.

Preventing Knee Osteoarthritis

With no precise reason behind this disorder, it is impossible to totally prevent it. However, by making a few healthy lifestyle tweaks and avoiding injury to the knee, it’s possible to reduce your risk of developing it. Avoiding excessive load-bearing exercises, such as weight training and running, can help. Instead, low-impact exercise, such as swimming and cycling, can help you control the pressure you place on your joints. Those who are overweight or obese can prevent osteoarthritis by losing weight.

When to Visit Your GP

If you are experiencing any of the above symptoms for a prolonged period of time, it is time to book an appointment with your GP practice. A healthcare professional can diagnose your problem and confirm if you definitely have knee osteoarthritis. They will also be able to identify other alternative causes for your symptoms.

How to Cope With an Osteoarthritis Diagnosis

As previously mentioned, this disorder is a chronic condition, and there is no known cure. However, there are ways you can treat it so that it doesn’t worsen over time. Sometime, osteoarthritis of the knee can improve. People with symptoms can treat the condition by participating in regular exercise, maintaining a healthy body weight, wearing comfortable footwear, and using assistive devices to help relieve joint strain. GPs can prescribe painkillers to those with severe pain, while physiotherapists can devise exercise plans to help you cope with your symptoms. In some extreme cases, surgery may be recommended to replace, strengthen or repair damaged joints.

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