Osteoarthritis is a degenerative joint disease that affects the articular cartliage, soft tissue and underlying bone of synovial joints. OA is now viewed as an active disease process which results in the destruction of the articular cartliage. The articular cartliage covers the end of bones where they meet to form joints. This articular cartliage allows us to move more freely reducing friction between the bones. When this breaks down new bone forms at the margins of the joint. Eventually the joint space narrows and range of movement decreases. This leads to bone on bone contact which is one source of potential pain.
In a recent study by Rayahin et al, (2014) it was found that higher self-efficiency was associated with a higher likelihood of good pain outcomes and that higher pain catastrophizing was associated with a significantly lower likelihood of good pain outcomes at two year follow up.
This finding allows us to believe that there is more that just a structural cause for pain. Great work has been carried out by researchers into the part the brain contributes to low back pain. Studies of these kind are needed to further understand all the potential sources of pain in osteoarthritis.
- Weight control
- Bone density
- Impact sports
- Ligament laxity
- Joint swelling
- Joint pain
- Usually affects large weight bearing joints but can affect hands.
- Crepitus on movement
- Loss of movement
- Can be sudden, or gradual
- Pain described as deep ache
- Worse with activity and better with rest
- Can progress to pain at rest/night
- Stiffness after periods of sleep/inactivity (5-10min).