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What's the latest research on osteoarthritis?

Donna Hill Howes, RN
Family Medicine
Experts are exploring the link between genetics (your family history) and osteoarthritis. It is not yet known exactly what elements of family history can increase risk, such as genetic risk of obesity, how genetics physically affects the shape of the joint, and other health factors that may or may not have some bearing on risk. But several genes have been identified that show osteoarthritis can be inherited.

X-ray, MRI, and other imaging techniques are improving the detection of osteoarthritis and the breakdown of cartilage. This could help doctors diagnose osteoarthritis sooner, and earlier treatment may help delay its progression.

Doctors are also looking for biomarkers, or something that could be found with a common test to determine whether or not you have osteoarthritis. Some researchers are evaluating blood tests to see if they can predict osteoarthritis.

Growing new cartilage is not exactly a new area of research, but several groups of researchers are seeking to improve the growth and quality of cartilage.

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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.