Arthritis

The  term  ‘arthritis’  refers  to  inflammation  of  the joint  but  there  are  several  forms  of  arthritis.    The disease causes pain that may be mild, moderate or severe.  The vast majority of patients who manage their  arthritis  properly  never  require  surgery.  Orthopaedic  surgeons  who  specialise  in  arthritis generally treat patients who have advanced arthritis with progressive loss of the bearing surface of the joint and ultimately destruction of the joint with pain, stiffness and loss of function.  Surgery may be required to relieve pain, stiffness and to improve function.

Osteoarthritis

This is the most common form of arthritis and arises due to wear and tear in which the bearing surface of the joint wears thin. It is not truly hereditary but does run in families with evidence of a genetic component.  This may be due to abnormal loading of a joint such as shallow sockets in the hip or it may be a defect in the bearing surface of the joint (articular cartilage). It usually affects the larger weight bearing joints.  Moderate to severe osteoarthritis occurs in 8% of people aged more than 60 years.  There  is  currently  no  proven  medication  or  method  to  reverse  or  halt  the  progression  of osteoarthritis.

Post-Traumatic Arthritis

Following a serious injury to a joint such as a fracture or previous surgery around the joint, arthritis may develop due to irregularities in the joint surface or alterations in the underlying bone structure or alignment of the joint.

Rheumatoid Arthritis

Rheumatoid arthritis is one of the inflammatory types of arthritis that affects many joints in the body.  It is a systemic disease affecting the whole body but focusing in the lining of all of the joints.  The joints are swollen and inflamed and the bearing surface of the knee becomes eroded.

Download our information sheet to learn more about Arthritis and treatment options.