Arthritis: Let’s Start with the Basics

What is Arthritis?

By: Harold E. Cates, Jr. M.D.

Arthritis is a disease that affects over 46 million adults and children. But it’s not just one disease. It is actually a term used to describe over 100 medical conditions. Each of us should educate ourselves about arthritis simply because it affects such a large portion of our population.
Basically, arthritis attacks our musculoskeletal system, specifically our joints. It causes pain, stiffness, inflammation and even joint cartilage damage. Most of us treat our own aches and pains with ibuprofen or other pain killers and can continue on with our day-to-day activities.
However, there are a growing number of people where arthritis causes such extreme weakness and stiffness that they can no longer perform common tasks such as getting dressed or making a pot of coffee. Just imagine how this is taking a toll on the individual, their family and even our country’s economy.
As we age, as our population continues to live longer, arthritis is becoming a very important part of millions of people’s lives. It is imperative that we educate ourselves on this complex disease and find ways to support research that will ultimately cure this un-curable condition.
That’s why we have produced a series of articles that examine and discuss the many forms of arthritis. We hope you enjoy or weekly blogs. Please give us feedback on this series and let us know if there are other topics you’d like to discuss.

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