© 2019 OA Knee Pain. All Rights Reserved.


Research suggests that whilst we are all susceptible to experiencing osteoarthritis of the knee there are a number of factors which can increase the likelihood of the condition appearing. These factors include those outlined below.

Previous injury to the knee

Once you injure yourself, regardless of which joint or muscle, there is an inherent weakness which increases the chances of subsequent injury again in the future. Due to this weakness, effective rehabilitation is key along with importance placed on rebuilding strength in the affected muscle or joint. this will minimise the risk of further injury in the future.

When considering the knee joint it is believed that those who have suffered ligament damage, specifically Anterior Cruciate Ligament (ACL) injuries, are far more common to experience OA due to the nature of the injury.

Ligaments are tough bands of tissue that connect the bones within the body and stabilise the joints. The ACL is one of four ligaments within the knee joint and is located at the front with the main purpose of preventing your knee from moving forward beyond your tibia (shin bone). It is the ACL that allows you to walk, run and jump. Without this ligament, your stability can be compromised.

Damage to the ACL will vary depending on the injury, but in grade 3 ruptures and tears, surgery is often required to either repair or replace the ligament. Surgery is followed by a period of intensive physiotherapy to rebuild strength in the knee once again. Following this type of injury you can expect to be out of action from sport for around nine months.

Cause Of Osteoarthritis - What Causes Osteoarthritis - OA Knee Pain Previous knee injuries can also increase the chance of osteoarthritis

Pre-existing conditions

Aside from pre-existing injuries, there are certain conditions which can increase the likelihood of the condition appearing and these include:

Any condition which has an impact on a joint, and its overall mobility, can be a major contributor in the onset of knee osteoarthritis.

Age

Often referred to as ‘wear and tear’.

As you get older your muscles will become weaker, putting additional pressure on the joints. When looking at the knee joint, a lifetime of being active can begin to wear down the cartilage within the joint, this is the root cause of the condition.

Whilst there is no way of pausing time or preventing the condition, it does highlight the importance of looking after your body proactively by eating correctly and staying fit and healthy to help reduce the risk when you do get older.

Causes Of Osteoarthritis - OA Causes - OA Knee Pain Age is a contributing factor to the onset of osteoarthritis

Genetic factors / family history

As with most conditions, your genetics play a huge part and knee osteoarthritis is no different.

Scientists are yet to identify a specific gene as being the root cause of the condition and instead believe that a number of smaller genetic factors may be the source of the issue. Research continues in this area, however it is unlikely that a genetic test will be developed in the near future.

Weight

The knee is a crucial joint and is responsible for taking the entire weight of your body. The heavier you are the more force is transmitted through your body (and your knees) when active. If you also consider high impact sports, such as running, then this force is amplified. The more force applied through the joint the greater the strain which can increase the rate of the cartilage degradation, resulting in further knee pain.

You should look to stick to the NHS guidelines on your healthy weight which in turn will reduce the strain, on not only your joints but your body as a whole, promoting a healthy lifestyle.

The latest set of research does now suggest that it is not necessarily the extra weight being carried which is the root cause but instead the inflammatory response (cytokines) that are expressed by excess fat tissue.

How would you rate the information on this page? (Your feedback is greatly appreciated)

What next?

Sign up to the OA Knee Pain newsletter

OA Knee Pain Social Board

Bringing you the latest news, research and treatment breakthroughs from the world of osteoarthritis

Visit our blog

Filter
  • blog
  • facebook
#

How Does Age Affect People's Experiences Of OA?


​When we think about arthritis, there is a tendency to categorise it as an old person’s disease. We envision the little old lady struggling to make it across the road or the old man with a walking stick. But the reality couldn’t be further from the truth. There are thought to be around 10 million people living in the UK with the disease and these cover a range of ages from children right up to those over the age of 65.

#

How Does The Body Clock Affect The Development Of OA


Various factors can affect our body clocks but this is usually a temporary situation. A series of late nights, shift patterns that change and long flights can produce temporary effects such as mood changes and sleep disruption. We commonly refer to this as jet lag and do not view it as a serious problem but it is now widely recognised that our biological clocks are also important to our general well-being and health.

#

How Does Obesity Affect Your Risk Of OA Knee Pain


​Obesity has been known to be a serious health problem for many years, but the impact that being overweight can have on your knees is not always recognised. Seriously obese people are fourteen times more likely to develop osteoarthritis (OA) of the knee than people whose weight is within healthy parameters, so it follows that maintaining a healthy weight can reduce your risk of knee pain due to this disease.

#

What Are The Differences Between OA And Other Types Of Arthritis?


​There are over 100 different types of arthritis. The most common include osteoarthritis (OA), rheumatoid arthritis (RA), psoriatic arthritis (PsA), ankylosing spondylitis (AS), fibromyalgia and gout. Although there are many similarities between the different types of arthritis and the pain they cause, knowing which type you have can make the difference between successful treatment or further debilitation.

#

Where Can I Turn to For Support For OA Knee Pain


Osteoarthritis causes increasing joint pain and stiffness in the knee. Tenderness and swelling are also likely to be present. This may be particularly the case immediately after you wake up, after overusing your knee, or when resting.

#

How Can Tai Chi Help People With OA Knee Pain


​There is proof that the martial art tai chi can help with the symptoms and pain of knee osteoarthritis (OA). We look at the evidence below and explain how tai chi can improve the condition.

#

The Effect Of Weather On OA Knee Pain


​Many of us are familiar with stories of people with injuries or joint conditions claiming to be able to predict the weather based upon their pain and stiffness. Whilst they are often met with polite nodding or even ridicule, there is evidence that there may be a genuine link between weather conditions and levels of pain. There is a growing body of research looking at the effect of weather on OA knee pain, but the results are far from conclusive.

#

The Mental Health Impact Of OA Knee Pain


​Any injury to the knee can be particularly painful. This includes the mobility issues that often arise from osteoarthritis. As the knee is so important when standing or walking, damage to the joint can have a negative impact on your ability to accomplish day-to-day tasks. It is not, however, just the physical discomfort that can make life more difficult. As with any long-term injury, chronic pain in the knee can have a negative effect on mental health. For example, it can increase the likelihood of experiencing depression or anxiety.

#

OA Knee Pain Treatments Of The Near Future


Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common form of arthritis in the UK, occurring when the cartilage cushioning the joints wears down. Most commonly found in people over 50 years old or following an injury or other stress on the joints, OA is most often seen in the knees and can cause serious pain and debilitation to those who develop it.

#

Could OA Be Recategorised As More Than One Disease?


​Traditionally, osteoarthritis has been considered to be a single disease with the same cause and course of treatment. However, recent evidence has emerged which suggests that it is not a single disease and this may have implications when it comes to treatment options.