Common Questions About Osteoarthritis

The man is holding his elbow, he feels strong pain. As we age our bodies show the effects of years of movements, impacts, strains, and general life. The result is the most common form of arthritis, osteoarthritis.

When people think of arthritis, they think of curled fingers and inflamed joints, but those symptoms are part of other forms of arthritis where the body attacks the joints. Osteoarthritis is colloquially known as “wear and tear” arthritis, and it is completely different.

How Common Is Osteoarthritis?

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that osteoarthritis affects over 32.5 million Americans.

What Is Osteoarthritis?

There are numerous kinds of arthritis, but none is like osteoarthritis where the degeneration is basically the result of aging. With osteoarthritis, joint cartilage breaks down. As the cartilage thins, this creates more bone-on-bone contact, and that leads to pain.

What Are the Signs and Symptoms of Osteoarthritis?

At Cynergy Physical Therapy, we help our aging patients deal with the problems and pain caused by osteoarthritis. As the cartilage thins in a joint, these are the common symptoms:

  • Pain or aching
  • Stiffness
  • Decreased range of motion
  • Tenderness
  • Swelling
  • Bone spurs
  • Grating sensation or popping in a joint

Who Is at Risk for Developing Osteoarthritis?

These are risk factors that increase a person’s risk of osteoarthritis:

  • Older age — More years means more and more wear and tear.
  • Obesity — Extra weight adds stress to the joints. Fat tissue can also produce proteins that can cause inflammation in the joints.
  • Joint injury — Previous joint injury increases the odds it will later become arthritic.
  • Repeated stress — If your job or sport involves repetitive stress, osteoarthritis could follow.
  • Genetics — There is a genetic tendency.
  • Bone deformities — Some people are born with defective cartilage or issues with the construction of their joints.


At Cynergy, we help patients with their osteoarthritis through stretching and strengthening the muscles surrounding the problematic joint and neuromuscular re-education. We may also use manual techniques such as distraction, Active Release Techniques, and joint mobilization.

We have five locations across the city where we can help with your joint pain. Make an appointment at Midtown West, (212) 974-7252; Chelsea, (212) 255-8080; Midtown East, (212) 980-2963; ADPT by Cynergy, (212) 292-7145; or Cobble Hill, (718) 795-2744.

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