Understanding Arthritis

    A man smilesWhat is arthritis? Although the word arthritis actually means joint inflammation, in the public health world the term is actually used to describe more than 100 rheumatic diseases and conditions that affect joints, the tissues which surround the joint and other connective tissue.

    Here are just some arthritis facts that you may or may not know:

    What are the most commonly diagnosed types of arthritis?

    Childhood arthritis, fibromyalgia, general arthritis, gout, osteoarthritis, rheumatoid arthritis and lupus are the most common forms of arthritis.

    Which group does this disease affect the most?

    Most types of arthritis are more common in women; 60% of all people with arthritis are women.  Gout is more common in men.

    What are the top arthritis risk factors?

    • The risk of developing most types of arthritis increases with age. Specific genes are associated with a higher risk of certain types of arthritis, such as rheumatoid arthritis (RA), systemic lupus erythematous (SLE), and ankylosing spondylitis.

    • Women are more likely to have arthritis than are men.

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