Meet Dr. Donnica Video Introduction TV Appearances

Diseases & Conditions Today on DrDonnica.com Clinical Trials Decisionnaires FAQs Top Tips Fast Facts Debunking Myths News Alerts Celebrity Speak Out Guest Experts Women's Health Champions Books Women's Health Resources

Mission Privacy Policy Sponsors Press Room What's New? Contact Us

This website is accredited by Health On the Net Foundation. Click to verify. We comply with the HONcode standard for trustworthy health information: verify here.


Hope Award

Send to a Friend

Debunking the Myths, Misconceptions, and Misinformation About Arthritis

Arthritis is the most common and disabling chronic condition in American women.  It affects one in seven Americans or 40 million adults; with the aging of the Baby Boomers, 60 million Americans are expected to be afflicted with arthritis in 2020.  Despite the extensive prevalence of this condition, and abundant information about this disease, myths and misinformation still prevail.   The top five myths about arthritis are listed below, with a brief "antidote".  As always, if you are affected by arthritis and want the most appropriate information for you, consult your healthcare provider. 

  • Arthritis is a natural consequence of aging.  False.  The term "arthritis" simply refers to an inflammation of the joints.  There are now known to be more than 100 types of arthritis.  Five of those account for nine out of ten cases: osteoarthritis (OA), rheumatoid arthritis (RA), fibromyalgia, lupus, and gout.  All of them are caused by disease processes.  While the risk of OA (osteoarthritis) increases with age, it should not be considered a "normal" by-product of the aging process.
  • Arthritis only affects women.  While it is true that women are more likely to be affected and to be affected more seriously (2 out of 3 women over 65 have OA), more than half of all men over 65 will also have OA.
  • Arthritis only affects postmenopausal women.  False.  Many types of arthritis actually begin in the 20's or 30's; JRA (juvenile rheumatoid arthritis) can begin in toddlers.  Arthritis is actually the most common chronic condition among those over the age of 15. Two out of three Americans with arthritis are under age 65.
  • Nothing can be done to treat arthritis.  Not true.   Depending upon the type of arthritis you have, there are numerous prescription and over-the-counter treatment options.  There are also a host of lifestyle changes that can be made, physical therapy programs, joint replacement procedures, and even tools that can be employed to greatly improve the symptoms and prognosis for patients with arthritis. 
  • Arthritis is arthritis; if I have it, I can just treat myself with over the counter medications. While an estimated 6 million Americans subscribe to this approach, there is a tremendous value to seeing your physician to be properly evaluated and treated for this condition. Arthritis can start as just minor aches and pains, but if left undiagnosed and untreated, it can become a significant disability.   Advances in medical treatment have led to new hope for millions of people with this potentially disabling condition.

Created: 11/26/2003  -  Donnica Moore, M.D.

All the content contained herein is copyrighted pursuant to federal law. Duplication or use without
the express written permission of DrDonnica.com subjects the violator to both civil & criminal penalties.
Copyright © 2006 DrDonnica.com. All rights reserved.

Home | Today on DrDonnica.com | Meet Dr. Donnica | TV Appearances | Clinical Trials
Diseases & Conditions | Decisionnaires | Celebrity Speak Out | Guest Experts | Women's Health Champions
FAQs | Women’s Health Resources | Archive | Books & Tapes | Site Certification | Advanced Search
Mission | What’s New? | Press Room | Privacy Policy | Sponsors | Partners | Contact Us