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Article Title:
Osteoarthritis -- How is it Affecting the Aging US Population?

Article Description:
As the "baby boomer generation" ages, doctors predict there
will be a staggering growth in the cases of Osteoarthritis (OA).

Additional Article Information:
818 Words; formatted to 65 Characters per Line
Distribution Date and Time: Tue Feb 14 08:47:54 EST 2006

Written By:     Kamau Austin
Copyright:      2006, All Rights Reserved
Contact Email:  mailto:[EMAIL PROTECTED]

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Osteoarthritis -- How is it Affecting the Aging US Population?
Copyright © 2006 Kamau Austin, All Rights Reserved
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As the "baby boomer generation" ages, doctors predict there
will be a staggering growth in the cases of Osteoarthritis
(OA).  Although OA affects the quality of life for many
people as they age, few people are familiar with the term

Osteoarthritis is one of the most common forms of arthritis.
It is one of the main causes of disability in older adults.

OA's impact and toll on the US health care system is

Until the 1980s, OA was considered a progressive
degenerative disorder.  It was considered one of the
inevitable results of age.

Back in the 80s it was assumed that Osteoarthritis developed
because of the long time normal wear and tear of joints.
This was viewed as naturally occurring with age.

However, new research has altered this perception to a large
extent. Research shows that there may be other factors
associated with OA.

-- Major Factors of Osteoarthritis --

- Water Retention
- Heredity
- Obesity

One of the major symptoms of this disease is the swelling of
the joints due to result of water retention.  The cartilage
in your joints may retain water. This brings about changes
in the bone underlying the cartilage (called the subchondral

This is especially noticeable the joints which bear the
weight of the body, for example knees and hips. OA results
from an inflammation of the joints; this is also called
joint incongruity.

This is a particularly painful condition which hampers the
movement of the afflicted joint to a large extent.
Physicians predict a very strong connection between OA and

Obesity is another major risk factor which contributes to
this disorder. This is because the weight bearing joints
(knees, hips) of an overweight person would have to function
under greater pressure.

As the body grows older, the cartilage component of our
skeletal framework gradually loses its ability to repair
itself. Thus, OA has come to be largely associated with
aging. Some scientists predict that nutrition (or lack of
it) may also be a contributing factor.  Supplements like
Phosoplex is gaining popularity with helping to offset this

Minerals like calcium and vitamins like C and D are
essential to the formation of strong bones. New research is
being conducted to find out whether a lack of these elements
can contribute to the development of OA as the person grows

Some genetic and heredity conditions relating to the
skeletal framework may also play role in the onset of OA --
bone dysplasias and charcot joints. Some physicians also
point towards the Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome.

If an injured joint has not been properly aligned, the risk
of OA increases for that particular joint. There are a
couple of occupational factors too which contribute to OA.

Any joint, which is being repetitively used or overworked,
is susceptible to OA disease. This is because these tasks
also over tax the muscles.

Overtaxing a particular muscle which protects a joint also
increases the risk of OA.

Pain is one of the primary symptoms of this disease. The
frequency and level of this pain may increase over a period
of months, even years.

While it impairs free movement, the condition might also
worsen with enforced activity. Doctors strongly advise rest
in such cases as the pain usually subsides after a period of

OA symptoms also include certain stiffness in the joints in
the mornings. However, it does not usually last for more
than half an hour. The joint will also feel stiff after a
long period of rest but this stiffness would most likely go
away after a few minutes.

Exercises, like weight lifting and that intent on
strengthening the muscles will also help. Treatment with
drugs can only help to relieve the pain. You might also want
to apply cold packs to the inflamed joint. Surgery is
absolutely the last resort. It includes options like partial
or complete joint replacement – these are relatively safe

The implications of this disease on the ageing US population
are quite immense. It was predicted that on the year 2003,
almost 70 million Americans suffered from OA and other
related disorders.

This number is expected to drastically go up as the 'baby
boomer' generation grows older annually. OA has been the
cause of 32 million physician visits and has resulted on the
hospitalization of over 2.3 million patients.

There isn't any universal cure for Osteoarthritis.  However
proper supplementation provides a ray of hope in the care of
OA.  Natural products such as  Phosoplex™ available from
Amazon or from , can actually help to
support healthy cartilage, relieve pain and provide
lubrication to your joints.

Kamau Austin is a health and fitness enthusiast and
advocate. He writes on a regular basis on timeless
health and fitness tips at the Fit After Forty Blog.
See more useful health and fitness news and tips at...

This Article must be published with a disclaimer as such...
This article is for general information purposes only. Before
under taking any exercise or treatment program always first
check first with your doctor and health professionals.



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