Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis, also known as “wear and tear” arthritis, is the most common form of arthritis. It is a progressive disease of the joints that usually develops after many years of joint use. The disease most commonly affects people who are middle-aged or older.

Osteoarthritis: What You Need to Know 

Technology

Our team uses the latest technology by experts to treat osteoarthritis. We also offer arthroscopy, a minimally invasive surgical treatment that can reduce recovery time and risk of complications.

Personalized Care 

You and your family will feel the advantages of personalized, patient-centered care. No two patients are alike so we partner with you on your osteoarthritis care as a team.

Experienced, Trusted Expertise

As a university hospital and health system, our team provides the most advanced care backed by research: We make all diagnostic and treatment recommendations based on the latest thinking in the field.

What is Osteoarthritis?

Osteoarthritis occurs when the cartilage that cushions the ends of your bones gradually wears away. The smooth surface of the cartilage becomes rough and frayed. Cartilage can wear down completely, causing bone to rub against bone. 

Osteoarthritis can happen in any joint in your body, but typically occurs in the joints in your hands, knees, hips, neck and lower back.

Osteoarthritis may result from a combination of factors such as: 

  • Age - the risk increases as you age
  • Gender - the condition is more common in women than men
  • Family history - some bone deformities are inherited conditions that can contribute to osteoarthritis
  • Injury or stress on a joint - accidents, playing sports and repetitive motions
  • Muscle weakness - a lack of movement or exercise
  • Obesity - excess body weight puts extra pressure on your weight-bearing joints, such as your knees
  • Other diseases - some diseases contribute to developing osteoarthritis. For example:

Osteoarthritis Symptoms

The symptoms of osteoarthritis can range from mild to debilitating. They can include:

  • Pain and achiness 
  • Inflammation 
  • Stiffness
  • Loss of flexibility
  • Development of bone spurs or loose fragments of cartilage 
  • A grinding feeling during joint movement

Osteoarthritis Diagnosis and Treatment

The treatment that is right for you will depend upon the location of your osteoarthritis. At Fletcher Allen, we use specialized techniques to diagnose osteoarthritis.

Fletcher Allen’s physicians are highly trained in treating osteoarthritis. Our knowledgeable surgeons use advanced technology and minimally invasive procedures, such as arthroscopy, whenever possible. We treat osteoarthritis on a regular basis. 

Learn more about osteoarthritis diagnosis and treatment.

Find a Fletcher Allen physician or call 802-847-2663.