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Fracture Care

ZOA is caused by joint damage. This damage can accumulate over time, which is why age is one of the main causes of the joint damage leading to osteoarthritis. The older you are, the more wear and tear you’ve had on your joints.

Other causes of joint damage include past injury, such as:

  • Torn cartilage
  • Dislocated joints
  • Ligament injuries

They also include joint malformation, obesity, and poor posture. Certain risk factors, such as family history and gender, increase your risk of osteoarthritis.

Osteoarthritis symptoms

OA can occur in any joint. However, the most commonly affected areas of the body include the:

  • Hands
  • Fingertips
  • Knees
  • Hips
  • Spine, typically at the neck or lower back

The most common symptoms of osteoarthritis include:

  • Pain
  • Tenderness(discomfort when pressing on the area with your fingers)
  • Stiffness
  • Inflammation

Severe osteoarthritis

OA occurs in five stages, from 0 to 4. The first stage (0) represents a normal joint. Stage 4 represents severe osteoarthritis . Not everyone who has osteoarthritis will progress all the way to stage 4. The condition often stabilizes long before reaching this stage.

People with severe osteoarthritis have extensive or complete loss of cartilage in one or more joints.

The bone-on-bone friction associated with this can cause severe symptoms such as:

  • Increased swelling and inflammation.
  • Increased pain.
  • Decreased range of motion- You may not be able to move as well, due to stiffness or pain in your joints. This can make it harder to enjoy the day-to-day activities that used to come easily.
  • Joint instability- Your joints may become less stable. For instance, if you have severe OA in your knees, you may experience locking (sudden lack of movement). You may also experience buckling (when your knee gives out), which can cause falls and injury.
  • Other symptoms. As a joint continues to wear down, muscle weakness, bone spurs, and joint deformity may also occur.