What is osteoarthritis?
It's the most common type of arthritis. It occurs when the cartilage covering the end of the bones gradually wears away. Without the protection of the cartilage, the bones begin to rub against each other and the resulting friction leads to pain and swelling. Osteoarthritis can occur in any joint, but most often affects the hands and weight-bearing joints such as the knee, hip, and facet joints (in the spine). Osteoarthritis often occurs as the cartilage breaks down, or degenerates, with age.
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