DR P. MARAZZI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY DR P. MARAZZI / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
Osteoarthritis. Swollen knee joint of a 94 year- old woman affected by osteoarthritis. Osteoarthr- itis is a common disease affecting synovial joints such as hands, hips and knees. It is characterised by a loss of the cartilage that lines these joints and the formation of osteophytes (bone outgrowths). This leads to pain, swelling and occasionally may result in the loss of function of the affected joint. No specific cure exists for osteoarthritis. Symptoms may be relieved by analgesic drugs, heat treatment and physiotherapy. Joint-replacement surgery is used in some of the most severe cases.
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