Osteoarthritis (OA) is also known as degenerative joint disease. OA breaks down the cartilage in your joints. Cartilage is the slippery tissue that covers the ends of bones in a joint. It helps absorbs the shock of movement. When you lose cartilage, your bones rub together. Over time, this rubbing can permanently damage the joint.
Risk factors for OA include:
No single test can diagnose OA. Most doctors use several ways, including medical history, a physical exam, x-rays, or lab tests.
OA cannot be cured. You can treat the symptoms with methods that include: