GEORGE’S MARVELOUS MEDICINE (FOR OSTEOARTHRITIS)
If 8-year-old George Kranky could concoct magic medicine that made his grandmother and various farm animals grow tens of feet tall, surely, we can formulate an antidote for osteoarthritis. However, before we begin, it is important to understand what it is that we are trying to remedy. What is osteoarthritis?
If you get started on the content below, I’ll begin collecting the ingredients needed for our magic medicine. Now, where do we keep the wine, cheese and crackers?
Arthritis affects the joints in our body. The main symptoms include joint inflammation, joint pain, swelling, stiffness, reduced range of motion and a gradual decrease in function. To help others better understand the feeling of arthritis, it was described in a creaky joints blog post as such:
“Arthritis is this constant ache that’s always in the background, like static from a radio or TV that’s always on. It never goes away but sometimes it’s easier to ignore than others. When I’m having a rough day and I’m in a lot of pain it’s the worst1”
Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common form of arthritis. It affects more than 10% of Canadians and approximately 50% of new cases occur in those over the age of 50, as a result, it is typically defined as an age-related disorder.
The joints in our body are constantly undergoing a cycle of making new tissue and recycling old, OA is the consequence of an imbalance between this cycle of breakdown and repair. If left unmanaged, this imbalance will result in structural and functional changes to synovial joints.
Imaging of Osteoarthritis in the knee (Hunter DJ (1999)4 Fig 1).