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Did You Know? Arthritis Affects More Women Than Men
9/22 12:08:00

Although it’s widely assumed that arthritis is pretty common in just about everyone as they grow older, statistics indicate that arthritis is actually far more prevalent in women than men, regardless of age group. With the right arthritis treatment neither men nor women need to suffer from arthritis, and can get back to enjoying the active lifestyle that California residents are known for.

Understanding Arthritis

Our joints are cushioned by a slippery substance called cartilage. Not only does cartilage act as a lubricant that aids in smooth joint movement, but it also works as a shock absorber to minimize the jarring effects of impacts.

In an arthritic joint, the cartilage has become rough, or may even erode away completely. This causes joint movement to become much more difficult, especially if bone rubs directly on bone. The affected joints become swollen and inflamed, and even simple movement from daily activities may be prohibitively painful. Since it is a degenerative disease, the symptoms of arthritis will continue to worsen over time.

Looking at the Numbers

The CDC examined data gathered from the National Health Interview Survey to estimate the prevalence of arthritis in adults who were age 18 and older. The total number of adults who reported arthritis came to about 22 percent. However, 24 percent of women reported symptoms of arthritis, while only 18 percent of men reported the same diagnosis. Although the incidence of arthritis increased among older respondents, women outnumbered men in arthritis cases among every age group recorded.

Over the next few decades, the number of diagnosed arthritis cases is expected to increase up to an estimated 67 million adults (one-fourth of the total population of the United States) by the year 2030. If current trends continue, this means approximately two-thirds of these cases will be in women. Keep in mind that these numbers reflect only those who are diagnosed by medical doctors, and not the numbers of people who suffer from their aches and pains in silence.

Almost 42 percent of adults who have been diagnosed with arthritis report limitations in their daily activities due to their condition, while 31 percent of working adults report that their arthritis limits their work capabilities as well. Problems with stooping, bending or kneeling are common, with 40 percent of arthritic adults reporting that there is at least one out of nine primary daily functions that are �very difficult� or impossible to carry out.

Another CDC study reports that 47.5 million adults in the United States reported a disability in 2005; arthritis or rheumatism is the most common cause of disability, followed by back problems.

Getting Help

If you have tried and exhausted all of your options to reduce pain and discomfort associated with arthritis symptoms, we may be able to offer a more effective solution. Many people with arthritis will first try preventative measures such as losing weight, taking over-the-counter medications, exercising more frequently, and engaging in physical therapy.
Seeking treatment for your arthritis symptoms begins with good health. Regular exercise and a good diet are important elements of keeping your body functioning at top gear. Additionally, in-office treatments like steroid injections-from a qualified physician can also make a big improvement in relieving your arthritis symptoms.
Finally, if other methods have not helped or aren’t making a difference any more, it might be time to look for a good orthopedic doctor. The right orthopedic surgeon can help Orange County men and women who are suffering from arthritis pursue a course of minimally invasive and/or surgical treatments designed to help reduce or eliminate your arthritis symptoms.

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