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Who is affected by arthritis?

At least 46 million Americans (about one in five) have a diagnosed form of arthritis, and nearly 19 million people find that arthritis limits their daily activities. Nearly two-thirds of all individuals with arthritis are under the age of 65. More than half of all adults with diabetes and heart disease have arthritis.

Being overweight or obese increases the risk of developing osteoarthritis. One study showed that women who lose as little as 11 pounds can decrease their risk of knee osteoarthritis by more than 50 percent.

Dr. Ashley R. Bateman, MD
Family Practitioner

Just about anyone is at risk for arthritis, as aging increases the risk. Other factors also increase the risk of developing arthritis, including having a genetic predisposition to the disease.

Typically arthritis is a degenerative disease of elderly individuals. Individuals who have had sports injuries while younger are at increased risk. Also, childhood deformities and conditions predispose individuals to later develop arthritis. Obesity has shown to be a significant risk factor for arthritis. Recent research also indicates that there is a genetic component to the degenerative wear of cartilage which might predispose some individuals to arthritis more so than others.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.