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Who is at risk for Osteoarthritis?

Updated at: Mar 06, 2013
Written by: Dr Poonam SachdevPublished at: Jan 19, 2013
Who is at risk for Osteoarthritis?

Osteoarthritis (OA) can affect anyone but certain factors increase your risk of developing the disease such as your age, sex, bone deformities and obesity.

risk factors for osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis (OA) can affect anyone but certain factors increase your risk of developing the disease. Read to know more on who is at risk of OA;

  • Age: Osteoarthritis is a disease of old age. It tends to affect older adults (people over 50 years of age) and is rare in people younger than 40 years of age.
  • Sex: The risk of OA is higher in women as compared to men. The exact cause of higher risk of OA in women is not known.
  • Bone deformities: If you have malformed joints or defective cartilage you are at risk of OA.'
  • Joint injuries: Injury or damage to the joint or cartilage (while playing sports or from an accident) increases your risk of OA. In younger people osteoarthritis, often develops as a complication of an injury or another joint condition. Osteoarthritis that occurs after joint injury or damage is known as secondary osteoarthritis. It can occur even years after the initial injury to a joint.
  • Obesity: People who are overwieight/obese are at higher the risk of OA as it increases the stress and strain the joint especially the weight-bearing joints, such as the knees and hips.
  • Other joint diseases: People with other bone and joint condition such as gout, rheumatoid arthritis, Paget's disease of bone or septic arthritis are at higher risk of developing osteoarthritis.


There is no definite way to prevent osteoarthritis but being aware of your risk factors for OA can help you to adopt lifestyle changes and other measures to prevent further damage to your joints.


Read more articles on Osteoarthritis.


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