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FAQ Frequently asked questions
What is osteoarthritis?
Osteoarthritis is a degenerative disorder that affects joints, causing inflammation, stiffness and pain.
What are the symptoms of osteoarthritis?
Although there can be no symptoms, osteoarthritis typically comprises joint stiffness, pain and muscle weakness.
Who gets osteoarthritis?
The risk of osteoarthritis increases with age and with family history of the disease.
How is osteoarthritis diagnosed?
Osteoarthritis is diagnosed by physical examination and the use of X-rays, although other tests may be needed, such as ultrasound and MRI.
How is osteoarthritis treated?
There is a range of treatment options for osteoarthritis. Your doctor will help you decide what treatment is right for you. Pain-relief medications, anti-inflammatory medications, physical therapy, exercise and/or surgery can be used to treat osteoarthritis.
Can osteoarthritis be cured?
Osteoarthritis cannot be cured, but treatment can manage symptoms and slow its progression.
Can osteoarthritis be prevented?
Osteoarthritis cannot be prevented, but treatment can help stop it from getting worse. You can reduce your risk of developing osteoarthritis by maintaining a healthy weight and performing regular, low-impact exercises.
What is the outcome for osteoarthritis?
Osteoarthritis is a degenerative disorder, so over time it tends to worsen. However, treatment, especially when started early on, can slow the progression of osteoarthritis.
About this article
Author: Jonathan Meddings BMedLabSc (Hons)
First answered: 26 Nov 2014
Last reviewed: 19 May 2018
Rating: 4.3 out of 5
Votes: 1393 (Click smiley face below left to rate)