What are the symptoms of Osteoarthritis?
The surprising thing about osteoarthritis is the variability of the symptoms.
For some people, the changes within the joint may lead to quite severe pain and stiffness around the joint. Pain may even be present at rest as well as on movement. For others, symptoms may be very mild and occasional, perhaps being brought on by periods of increased use or some minor injury.
Muscle weakness may ultimately lead to the joint feeling unsafe and unstable, as if about to give way. Symptoms will also vary both with the joints involved and their use.
In Osteoarthritis of the hands the pain, redness and swelling may only be present for a short while as the bony growths develop. However, osteoarthritis of the base of the thumb may cause ongoing problems when people try to grip or hold things.
Pain from Osteoarthritis of the hip may be felt in the groin or the front of the thigh to the knee, most commonly during walking and standing but, for some, even at rest. Stiffness may also lead to increased difficulty with mobility. In osteoarthritis of the knee pain may also be felt when standing or walking and it may take a while to “loosen up” after sitting or standing.
In Osteoarthritis of the spine there may be pain and stiffness in the neck or lower back and what is known as referred pain down the arm or leg due to irritation of the nerves supplying the area.