Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common form of joint disease, with the knee followed by the hip as the most frequently involved joint. In the UK currently 8 million people are affected with 1 million of those receiving some sort of treatment.
What is it?
OA is a condition in which low-grade inflammation results in pain in the joints, caused by abnormal wearing of the cartilage that covers and acts as a cushion inside joints and destruction or decrease of synovial fluid that lubricates these joints. As the bone surfaces become less well protected by cartilage, the individual experiences pain upon weight bearing, including walking and standing.
There are 2 types of OA
Primary, where the process is as a result of biochemical changes in the cartilage and Secondary, which may be caused by any of the following: Age. Often cited as a cause of OA but this is not true, however age is most definitely a contributory factor (muscles weaken, weight increases, the body’s self-healing mechanisms slow etc.)
Previous Injury. Injuries, operations, other inflammatory diseases or congenital abnormalities.
Physically demanding job.
Gender. Women are more commonly affected than men.
Signs and symptoms
The main symptom is chronic pain causing loss of mobility and often stiffness. Pain is described as a sharp ache, or a burning sensation in the associated muscles and tendons. Crepitus, a crackling sound can often be heard and felt as the roughened bone ends move over each other. New bone can be laid down outside the normal architecture of the joint leading to the joints appearing mis-shapen, such as the bow-legged deformity at the knee joint.
What can you do?
Once the process of OA has occurred it is irreversible, however addressing the following may reduce the symptoms:
Keep to your ideal weight
Pace your activities during the day
Wear footwear with soft soles to increase shock absorbency
Activity and Exercise
Strengthening the muscles surrounding the joints will afford the best protection to the joints and inactivity will result in instability and the likelihood of pain occurring much sooner. The exercise should be appropriate to your condition, always seek the advice of an expert in medical exercise rehabilitation and avoid any activity which results in an increase in pain.
Medication and Supplements
Medications available to treat the symptoms of OA, from anti-inflammatories to painkillers. Previously Glucosamine Sulphate and Chondroitin claim to help prevent the onset of the process, however currently there is no definitive evidence to support this.
ACTEN® is a new innovative and revolutionary approach to managing the effects of osteoarthritis. The unique gel matrix allows significantly more of it’s active ingredients (collagen peptides, Vitamin C and Zinc) to enter the metabolism and actually reach the joint surfaces. Recent research has demonstrated that ACTEN® has had a far more positive effect on treating the symptoms of joint degeneration that Glucosamine Sulphate or Chondroitin. For more information regarding this fantastic advance in treating the debilitating effects of joint degeneration, please see www.acten.co.uk.
OA is not necessarily an unavoidable consequence of ageing and we will not all be queueing up for replacement hips and knees as we reach our pensionable years. Taking ACTEN® will allow for more appropriate, regular exercise which may well save you from premature pain and disability later in life.