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Am I At Risk for Osteoarthritis in My Knees?

Most people are at risk for osteoarthritis since it is largely associated with the wear and tear that comes with getting older. However, are you at an increased risk for this condition? Understanding the causes and risk factors will help you to determine whether you should be concerned about this condition. If osteoarthritis in the knees is suspected, it is important to seek a diagnosis. When it comes to a knee specialist, Fox Valley residents can get specialized care for conditions that affect this joint.

How Common is Osteoarthritis?

There are multiple forms of arthritis that have been discovered; however, this remains the most common out of all of them. In fact, nearly half of people who are at least 65 years old have this condition. It affects millions of people throughout the world. It can occur at any age, but it is most common in people who are at least 40 years old. When this condition occurs, it is a result of the cartilage in the joints starting to breakdown. This removes some of the protection on the ends of your bones, resulting in the inflammation that can cause a host of uncomfortable symptoms. While you can have this condition in any joint, it is extremely common in the knees. It is also common in the hips, spine and hands.

What Causes Osteoarthritis?

At the ends of your bones lies some cartilage. This is a type of soft tissue and when in this location, it works to essentially cushion the ends of your bones that are components of your joints. As you get older, the cartilage in your body starts to wear down. This is perfectly normal. With this condition, the slick surface that you will find on young and healthy cartilage starts to get rough. This causes an eventual complete breakdown of the cartilage. Once the cartilage is gone, it is no longer cushioning the ends of your bones, causing them to rub together.

Learning About the Risk Factors

There are many factors that can make your experiencing osteoarthritis more likely and these include:

  • Being older since this is largely related to wear and tear
  • Being overweight or obese
  • Working certain jobs that put a lot of stress on your knees and other joints
  • Having certain bone deformities
  • Being female
  • Having a history of joint injuries
  • Genetics and a family history

As you can see, osteoarthritis is common and many things can put you at risk. If you think that this condition could be affecting your knees, it is important that you see a knee specialist in as soon as possible for an accurate diagnosis.

If you would like to request a consultation with one of the orthopedic specialists at the Orthopedic & Sports Institute (OSI), please call (920) 560-1000 or request an appointment online. OSI is Northeast Wisconsin’s exclusive provider of Mako Robotic-Arm Assisted Surgery for Hips & Knees. OSI has convenient locations to serve you. In addition to the flagship facility in Appleton, you will find outreach clinics in New London, Ripon, Shawano, Waupaca, and the newest location serving the Green Bay area, inside the NOVO Health Clinic in De Pere. The Appleton location also has a walk-in clinic that provides care for new orthopedic injuries.

For post-surgical recovery and rehabilitation, Recovery Inn is located on the campus of the Orthopedic & Sports Institute in Appleton (OSI). This skilled nursing facility was the first orthopedics-only recovery facility in the nation attached to a surgery center. At OSI, you can have your surgery and rehab without leaving the building. Physical and occupational therapy take place steps from your room, where you will be rehabbing with the nationally recognized therapists from Advanced Physical Therapy & Sports Medicine.

For more information or to schedule a tour, please contact Recovery Inn Executive Director Shaena Van Handel at (920) 560-1066.

OSI is a proud member of NOVO Health.