Common Causes of Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis is a chronic and progressive disease. It can occur in young adulthood but the six most common causes of osteoarthritis are

  1. Gender – Female hips are wider than their knees, their knee joints are not aligned as straight as males. This alignment leads to a higher rate of knee injuries, and injuries can lead to osteoarthritis later in life.
  2. Genetics – Hip, knee, hand and spine arthritis have been reported to run in the family, especially if you have genetic joint defects.
  3. Type of work / Occupation – If you profession involves long hours of physical labour or constant pressure by kneeling, squatting or climbing, you are more likely to develop pain and stiffness in your knees.
  4. History of knee injury – Almost any sport can cause a fracture or injure a ligament or tendon. A bone fracture causes a break in the gliding surface, thereby increasing your chances of developing osteoarthritis.
  5. Obesity – Excess body weight places extra stress on your knees, speeding up the rate of degeneration. Every extra kg of weight on the body places an extra 4kg on the joints, especially your knees.
  6. Mal-aligned knees – Bow-leggedness or knock knees not only stresses articular cartilage but it also affects menisci, subchondral bone and ligaments – all of which may play a role in the progression of osteoarthritis.
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