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How does obesity affect knee pain?

Obesity plays a major role in pain in general, but it has some of its largest impact on knee pain. The most common cause of chronic knee pain in the U.S. is related to osteoarthritic changes, commonly referred to as arthritis. In simple terms, this is the general wearing down of the knee over time. When patients are obese it places a greater deal of stress on the knee joint, increasing the rate of deterioration exponentially. This will lead to worse knee pain sooner than in people with similar lifestyles but less weight. Obesity is also suspected to play a role in worsening inflammation, which is a major component of joint pain.

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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.