by Dr. Dorcas Adebimpe
Osteoarthritis is a common musculoskeletal disease, traditionally regarded as a degenerative joint condition. It is a common joint condition (disease) predominantly affecting the knee, hip, and hand joints. Some signs and symptoms of osteoarthritis are pain, muscle weakness, joint instability, joint stiffness, and reduced range of motion at the joint.
It is prevalent in people over 55 years, although arthritis in its various forms can start as early as infancy. Hand OA is associated with pain, reduced grip strength, loss of range of motion (ROM), and joint stiffness, leading to impaired hand function and difficulty with daily activities.
The World Health Organization stated that OA is one of the ten most disabling conditions among people above 30 years. It is also suggested that OA will be the fourth leading cause of disability by 2020.
However, an exercise that is a well-planned, structured, repetitive physical activity done to maintain and improve physical fitness has been found helpful in managing osteoarthritis.
Exercise has generally a positive effect on healthy cartilage depending on the type of activity and its intensity. The following effects are expected; pain reduction, increase in muscular strength, increase in range of motion/flexibility available at the joints, improved balance, and reduce joint stiffness.
Physiotherapists are trained to manage osteoarthritis and prescribe exercises to be carried out to reduce these pains and one can effectively use these body parts forthwith.
Dr. Adebimpe Dorcas. O (Pt) is a Physiotherapist who’s interested in improving the quality of health of individuals through educative content