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Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis (OA) or also known as calcification is a degenerative disease that attacks the joints. OA is a type of arthritis and a common cause of pain in the elderly. Although it can affect joints throughout the body, OA generally occurs in the knees, hips, lower back, neck, and fingers, and toes. OA occurs when the cartilage or cartilage that supports joints is chronically degraded or damaged. The cartilage itself functions to prevent friction between the bones at the joints. The erosion or destruction of the cartilage in the joint causes the bone joints to rub together, causing pain.

Prevention
Some of these things can be done to prevent osteoarthritis: maintaining ideal body weight (preventing obesity), avoiding physical activity and sports that give heavy loads to joints continuously, reducing the risk of falls in old age by means of adequate house lighting, non-slippery floors, handrails on bathroom walls, sitting toilets, avoid steps or stairs, no folds of carpet or scattered objects, and eating foods that are good for joint health, for example containing substances such as glucosamine, chondroitin, and hyaluronic acid.

Symptoms
The most common symptom in osteoarthritis is pain in the joints. Other symptoms that can be seen include joint stiffness in the morning that lasts less than 30 minutes, crepitus (a distinctive crunchy sound when moving the joint), the appearance of bone spurs (osteophytes) that press on the outside of the bone and nerve roots, reduced joint flexibility, and stiffness of the muscles that support the joints due to overwork to support the bones.

Cause
Age, mechanical stress, overuse of joints, anatomical abnormalities, obesity, and genetics are all risk factors for osteoarthritis. These factors can cause abrasions or mechanical or chemical injuries to the joints, resulting in cartilage degradation which leads to inflammatory reactions, joint damage, and pain.

Diagnosis
Diagnosis of OA can be made by physical examination, X-rays, and laboratory. X-rays will show the presence of osteophytes or enlargement and deformity in the affected bone or joint. Joint stiffness occurs in less than 30 minutes and there is a crepitus sound when the joint is moved. In hip calcification, laboratory results are often found in the blood sedimentation rate of 20 mm/hour.

Handling
Education for sufferers to maintain joint health is very important, especially minimizing the risk of falling. Other treatments that can be done include physiotherapy, namely reducing pain with the help of ultrasonic devices, lasers, TENS (Transcutaneous Electrical Nerve Stimulation) or electrical therapy, range of motion exercises, occupational therapy, and acupuncture.

In obese patients, weight loss programs are carried out to reduce joint load. Patients are also advised to protect their joints by using a knee decker to reduce activities that put a heavy load on the joints, such as going up and downstairs. Medicines used in the treatment of osteoarthritis include pain relievers such as paracetamol, pain relievers applied to joints, non-steroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, chondroprotective agents such as glucosamine, chondroitin, and hyaluronic acid, to direct injection into joints in some case.