"As our population gets older, fatter, and more likely to suffer from past joint injuries, osteoarthritis is increasing." That's how the article started off, terrifying isn't it? The Boston.com article goes on to describe how specialists are predicting that 67 million adults (which amounts to about a quarter of the adult population) will have arthritis by the end of 2030.
It goes on to describe how the estimated number of adults with arthritis may actually be higher than 67 million due to the growing number of young adults who are overweight - a major risk factor for osteoarthritis - and the growing number of highschool/college students with ACL knee injuries.
"People who tear their ACL have a 50 to 75 percent chance of developing severe osteoarthritis in 10 to 20 years ... Even though the orthopedic surgery is very effective in getting you back to playing your sport, it doesn't change your odds of developing severe osteoarthritis" says Dr. John Hardin, cheif science officer of the Arthritis Foundation.
The article continues with the story of 79 year old Josephine Foster, a restaurant hostess from Framingham, MA, who decided against traditional knee surgery and opted instead, to try a new treatment method; the platelet-rich plasma therapy. Platelet-rich plasma therapy has been a "treatment used for two decades by oral and plastic surgeons to improve wound healing, but only now being tried by orthopedic and other specialists to treat some sports injuries and osteoarthritis". Though this new approach may be promising, larger trials need to be conducted in order to prove its effectivenes according to a review in the October issue of the Journal of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons.
To read the full article: Click Here!