What is Arthritis?
Arthritis is one of the most common chronic conditions in the United States and the world. Currently about one in five U.S. adults report having arthritis. In the future many more persons will develop arthritis as the population ages. (1,2)
Arthritis means "joint inflammation", based on the Greek words; "arthron" for joint, and "itis" for inflammation. Arthritis is a chronic condition that affects joints, surrounding muscles, tendons, and tissues. The conditions may cause pain, discomfort, stiffness and swelling, not only in the joints, but in the surrounding muscles, tendons, and bones.
Arthritis is comprised of over 100 disease types and rheumatic conditions. The 100 types of arthritis refers to many, different conditions associated with joints, such as osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, systemic lupus, gout, bursitis, Lyme disease, carpal tunnel disease, and other conditions. (1,2)
Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common arthritis type. OA is a degenerative joint cartilage condition that often affects the hands, hips, knees, and spines. Some types of arthritis are associated with abnormal immune responses in the body; an example is rheumatoid arthritis. Although most of the causes of arthritis are unknown; effective treatments and strategies are readily available.
Last Updated: March 11, 2013