What can cause osteoarthritis

Arthrosis, known as osteoarthritis or osteoarthritis, is a very common chronic rheumatic disease in individuals over 65 years of age, characterized by wear and, consequently, deformities and changes in the function of the body's joints, frequent in the knees, spine, hands and hips.

Although its causes are not yet fully understood, it is known that osteoarthritis occurs due to the association of several factors, which are related to genetic influences, advancing age, hormonal changes, metabolism disorders and inflammation, and it is more common in people who make repetitive effort, suffered joint injuries or are overweight, for example.

This disease causes pain in the affected joint, in addition to stiffness and difficulty in moving this place, being necessary to carry out the treatment indicated by the doctor with medication, physical therapy or, in some cases, surgery to relieve the symptoms, since there is no definitive cure. Understand what arthrosis is and how it affects the body.

What causes

Arthrosis arises due to an imbalance in the cells that make up the capsule that makes up the joint, and this causes the joint to shrink and fail to properly perform its role of preventing contact between the bones. However, why this process happens is not yet fully understood. There is a suspicion that arthrosis has genetic causes, but there are some factors that increase a person's risk of developing arthrosis, such as:

  • Family history of arthrosis;
  • Age over 60 years;
  • Gender: women are more likely than men due to the decrease in estrogen, which occurs during menopause;
  • Trauma: Fractures, twisting or direct blow on the joint, which may have happened a few months or years ago;
  • Obesity: due to the overload that exists on the knees when there is excess weight;
  • Repetitive use of the joint at work or when practicing physical activity such as having to climb stairs frequently or carrying heavy objects on the back or head;
  • Excessive joint flexibility, as in the case of rhythmic gymnastics athletes, for example;
  • Practice of physical exercise without professional guidance over the years.

When these factors are present, an inflammatory process occurs at the site that also affects the bones, muscles and ligaments of the region, causing degeneration and progressive destruction of the joint.

How to treat

Treatment for osteoarthritis should be guided by a general practitioner, rheumatologist or geriatrician, and may include:

  • Use of medications that relieve symptoms such as anti-inflammatory drugs, pain relievers, ointments, food supplements or infiltrations. Know what are the options of remedies for osteoarthritis;
  • Physiotherapy, which can be performed with thermal resources, devices and exercises;
  • Surgery to remove part of the compromised tissue or to replace the joint with a prosthesis, in the most severe cases.

Treatment will also depend on the severity of the injury that the individual has and their health conditions. Find out more about the main forms of treatment for osteoarthritis.


Although there is no cure for osteoarthritis, it is possible to control the symptoms through the treatment proposed by the doctor in order to avoid possible complications resulting from osteoarthritis, which include joint deformity, severe pain and limited movement.

What to do to avoid

To avoid osteoarthritis, it is recommended to follow some recommendations that include maintaining the ideal weight, strengthening the thigh and leg muscles, avoiding repetitive use of the joints, exercising regularly but always accompanied by a physical education professional or physiotherapist. Hormone replacement therapy appears to be an extra help for certain women. Regular consumption of anti-inflammatory foods, such as nuts, salmon and sardines, is also indicated