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Osteoarthritis and YOU

Updated on July 28, 2010

a common problem

OSTEOARTHRITIS (OA) introduced itself to me long before I was able to acknowledge it was with me. As an individual living with Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA), I did not recognize the symptoms of OA as being separate. At the onset of RA almost 19 years ago, although all of my joints were affected, my right knee was especially prone to inflammation and synovial fluid.

I had always worked during my periods of agonizing pain, when I was able to walk,although sometimes I wanted to give up. I was actually diagnosed with degenerative arthritis-same as OA- before RA was discovered through bloodwork. OA can be diagnozed without bloodwork as it is a breakdown of cartilage in the joint. It is the most common type of arthritis and occurs more frequently in women over age 55. (Not quite so in my case).

A year ago I had a total right knee replacement due to OA in both knees. Today I am in physical therapy with both - recuperating with the right, and trying to buy time with the left. OA and RA have similar symptoms but there is a difference. Knowing the difference can help to better manage the symptoms.



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    • Sun-Girl profile image

      Sun-Girl 6 years ago from Nigeria

      Beautiful and well written article.