UNDERSTANDING OSTEOARTHRITIS

Arthritis and our joints are inexorably linked. Arthritis is a broad term that covers over 100 diseases, but its basic definition is “inflammation of the joints.” Dr. Dini primarily deals with a certain type of arthritis, osteoarthritis. Known as “wear and tear arthritis,” most people don’t even know they are suffering from osteoarthritis; they simply think they’re getting old or have aches and pains. Osteoarthritis can become very painful, however, and can end up limiting a person’s activity.

Since Dr. Dini deals with the pain and damage from osteoarthritis, here’s some additional information on this common form of arthritis.

WHAT IS OSTEOARTHRITIS?

Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis. Simply put, it involves the breakdown of cartilage in the joints. It is most common in the weight-bearing joints: the knees, hips, and spine.

Cartilage deterioration is how osteoarthritis differs from other forms of arthritis, such as better-known forms like rheumatoid arthritis. Cartilage is the firm, rubbery material that covers the ends of the bones in our joints and acts as a shock absorber. Your cartilage prevents bone impacts and friction because it is able to change shape when compressed.

When you have osteoarthritis, your cartilage becomes stiff and loses its elasticity, making it more prone to wear and damage. Without its elasticity, cartilage loses much of its shock absorbing ability. This can allow your tendons and ligaments to stretch, causing pain. It may allow your bones to rub against each other.

 

WHAT CAUSES OSTEOARTHRITIS?

Some of the causes of osteoarthritis are within your control; others you can do little about. These are the causes:

Dr. Dini treats the damage that osteoarthritis has wrought on his patients’ knees, hips, and shoulders. Don’t put up with the pain; call either his Los Angeles office, (323) 525-0101; or his Encino office, (818) 784-1020, to make your appointment.

 

 

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