Today we are honored to feature an article by Dr. David Rakel, associate professor at The University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health.
Dr. Rakel is the Founder and Director of the UW Integrative Medicine Program.
What is osteoarthritis (OA)?
OA, also called degenerative joint disease, is a condition that affects the joints (where two bones meet) in the body. The disease causes the cartilage in a joint to break down, often resulting in pain, swelling and stiffness. Cartilage is the tissue that cushions the ends of bones and allows joints to move easily.
OA also can cause bone spurs to grow around the joints. While it is the leading cause of disability in the U.S., there are different ways to help manage the disease. Getting diagnosed and starting treatment early can help set the stage for living well with OA.
Which joints are most affected by osteoarthritis?
OA tends to strike the following joints:
• Cervical spine (neck)
• Lumbar spine (lower back)
• Base of the big toe
• Base of the thumb
• Those closest to the fingertips
Read entire handout Non-Drug approaches for Managing Osteoarthritis at University of Wisconsin Integrative Medicine.
David Rakel MD is Associate Professor at The University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health. Dr. Rakel is the Founder and Director of the UW Integrative Medicine Program.
Dr. Rakel is board certified in family medicine, holistic medicine and sports medicine. He is the editor for the textbook Integrative Medicine, now in its third edition, and co-editor for the Textbook of Family Medicine. Dr. Rakel completed a two year fellowship in Integrative Medicine at the University of Arizona.
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