Today, 30 million Americans – nearly 1 in 10 adults – have osteoarthritis (OA), a leading cause of disability. Of the 100 different types of arthritis, osteoarthritis is the most common and is a serious disease that mainly affects joints in the hands, knees and hips in adults. Unfortunately, OA rates in the U.S. are significantly increasing and are expected to continue to do so in the next two decades as baby boomers age and the effects of the obesity epidemic take hold, according to the latest estimates from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
In response to this growing public health epidemic the Osteoarthritis Action Alliance (OAAA) is launching a new comprehensive campaign – StandUp2OA — focused on osteoarthritis awareness and prevention. While many people mistakenly believe that arthritis aches and pains are a normal part of aging that cannot be avoided, this is not the case. OA is not an inevitable symptom of aging and there are strategies that can help to prevent and manage it.
Lennie Rosenbluth, legendary University of North Carolina basketball star and OAAA honorary co-chair, remains physically active to manage his knee pain and encourages others to StandUp2OA. “It’s vital to find ways to still do what you enjoy, and stay as active as possible,” says Rosenbluth. “Even if it hurts a little, keep moving. Don’t ever let arthritis get you down and continue to find ways to have fun!”
You can learn more at StandUp2OA.org.
Ways to Get Involved
To help raise awareness about the StandUp2OA campaign and osteoarthritis prevention, the OAAA has developed free tools, resources and infographics that are specific to OA and empower patients, health care providers, policymakers and communities to promote: