Degenerative Joint Disease
Degenerative joint disease, also known as osteoarthritis, is a prevalent and chronic condition that affects millions of people worldwide. It is the most common form of arthritis and occurs when the protective cartilage that cushions the joints gradually breaks down. This leads to joint pain, stiffness, and reduced mobility.
Evaluating Your Condition
What is Degenerative Joint Disease?
Degenerative joint disease is a progressive condition that primarily affects weight-bearing joints such as the knees, hips, spine, and hands. As the cartilage wears away, bones rub against each other, causing pain, inflammation, and changes to the joint’s structure. Degenerative joint disease is more common with aging, but it can also occur as a result of joint injuries, obesity, or genetic factors.
Symptoms of Degenerative Joint Disease
The symptoms of degenerative joint disease can vary depending on the affected joint, but common signs include:
- Joint Pain: Pain that worsens with movement and eases with rest.
- Stiffness: Joint stiffness, especially in the morning or after periods of inactivity.
- Swelling: Joint swelling and tenderness.
- Decreased Range of Motion: Difficulty moving the affected joint fully.
- Joint Instability: Feeling of joint instability or weakness.
- Grating Sensation: A grating or crunching sensation (crepitus) during joint movement.