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Osteoarthritis, a degenerative joint disease, is popularly known as calcification. It is the most common 
joint disease in people over 50 years of age. Calcification can affect any joint in the body. The joints most commonly affected are the hands, hips, knees and spine.

In osteoarthritis, deterioration occurs in the articular cartilage structure. As a result, 
changes occur in the bone tissue under the articular cartilage. Growths in the bone and protrusions at the edge of the joint disrupt the normal structure of the joints, causing 
limitation in movements and pain.


What is calcification?


It is not known exactly why some joints are more affected. However, there are some factors that increase the risk of developing osteoarthritis. 

Age: Calcification is a disease of middle and advanced age. It is rare before the age of 40.

Gender: Women are more likely to develop osteoarthritis, but the cause is unknown.

Hereditary factors: The substances in the cartilage content are determined as hereditary. 
For this reason, it is now known that hereditary factors play a role, especially in hand osteoarthritis .

Wear and abrasion (mechanical factors): Repetitive minor traumas over the years impair the load-bearing ability of the joint and 
lead to osteoarthritis by causing cartilage destruction. Especially in overweight people, the development of osteoarthritis in joints such as the knee 
is dependent on this.

Other diseases affecting the bone and joint: Diseases such as gout, rheumatoid arthritis, diabetic neuropathy, Paget's disease, septic arthritis and congenital hip 
dislocation increase the risk of developing osteoarthritis.

Symptoms of osteoarthritis usually develop slowly and can become severe at any time. These symptoms are:

Pain; is the most common complaint. Initially, pain occurs during movement or later in the day and is relieved by listening. As the articular 
cartilage deformities and wear progress, pain may also occur at rest.

Seizing; occurs in the morning or after prolonged inactivity. It takes a very short time, rarely more than 15 minutes.

Restriction in joint movements; It can be seen in the advanced stages of the disease and can 
reach levels that disrupt the daily life functions of the person. The joint may appear swollen due to bony prominences. However, true swelling and temperature rise are rarely seen. Although very rare 
, deformities (shape deformities) can be seen. Osteoarthritis is a progressive disease. Although the complaints decrease or pass from time to time 
, the problems may continue to increase over the years.


How is calcification diagnosed?


Patients with pain, stiffness and swelling in the joints should consult a doctor.

Your doctor may order some examinations to determine the exact cause of your complaints:

Direct radiography (X-ray film): Taking X-rays of the joints helps in diagnosing osteoarthritis. However, 
the presence of osteoarthritis findings on x-rays does not mean that there will be complaints in that joint 
, nor does it indicate the severity of the complaints. 
Blood tests: There is no blood test to diagnose osteoarthritis, but some 
help differentiate osteoarthritis from other rheumatic diseases. 
Examination of joint fluid: Examination of joint fluid, especially in patients with joint swelling, 
may be necessary and useful in differentiating osteoarthritis from other diseases. 
How is calcification treated? 
Treatment is planned in accordance with the stage and severity of the disease. The purpose of the treatment of osteoarthritis;

Relief of the patient's pain Removal 
of restriction in movements and difficulties in activities of daily living,

Preventing disease progression. 
The first step in treatment is the education of the patient. First of all, the patient should be made aware of the disease. Heavy exercises and 
excessive use of the injured joint should be avoided. With weight loss, complaints related to osteoarthritis are reduced in joints that carry excessive weight. During painful 
periods, the patient is advised to rest. 
Regular exercise: The muscles surrounding the joint are strengthened. Thus, the load on the joint is reduced. However, the 
exercise program to be applied must be arranged by your physician.

Physical therapy applications: With the recommendation of your doctor, hot or cold applications, pain relief current treatments and 
deep heating treatments can be applied to the affected joint.

Drug therapy: In osteoarthritis, pain relievers and anti-inflammatory drugs are used under the control of a doctor during certain periods of the disease. 
The use of drugs that strengthen cartilage has also increased in recent years.

Intra-articular injection: If recommended by your specialist, cortisone injection 
can be made into the joint during periods of joint swelling. In addition, drugs that increase joint lubricity can be injected into the joint. 
Surgical treatment (surgery) may be recommended for patients who have not benefited from the treatments we have listed so far and whose disease severely impairs their daily living activities.

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