Younger woman in urban areas more prone to arthritis

Younger woman in urban areas more prone to arthritis

Evidence shows that osteoarthritis is commoner in urban areas, as against rural areas, and may be one of the reasons for an increasing trend in younger people

It is a known fact that arthritis is seen more commonly amongst women. Recently, it has been noted that the age of osteoarthritis is lowering rapidly

Statistics reveal that osteoarthritis will soon be the number one ailment having trounced heavyweights like cardiac disease, cancer and AIDS

The burden of osteoarthritis in young women patients is going to be a compelling problem in the next few years. The cause for high incidence of osteoarthritis in women is however not fully understood.

  • There are multiple factors like genes, obesity, lifestyle, food habits, injury, and joint biomechanics that play an important role
  • Changing food habits, pollution and adoption of sedentary lifestyle are thought to contribute to this rural-urban disparity
  • Incorrect and inappropriate exercise programmes, lack of stretching, impact exercises, poor quality footwear and prolonged high heels can lead to joint injuries and early arthritis
  • The increasing incidence of obesity has probably also in a significant manner, contributed to the increasing incidence of osteoarthritis. Obesity rates are 54% higher among adults with arthritis compared to those without the condition.

Genetic factors play a huge role in early onset of arthritis, but, continue to be an as yet non-modifiable entity.

This may well be the reason for a higher incidence of arthritis in women, especially at a younger age. Nearly 15% of women who experience moderate to severe effects are below the age of 45.


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The author is a senior Knee and Hip Surgeon at Fortis Hospital, Mulund

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