Arthritis is a condition that causes inflammation within a person’s joints. Contrastingly, osteoporosis is when a person has low bone mineral density. People sometimes confuse osteoporosis with osteoarthritis, which is a type of arthritis.
Arthritis can have many causes. When an
Osteoarthritis is therefore different from osteoporosis, which is when a person has low bone mineral density.
Both arthritis and osteoporosis can cause pain around the joints and bones. However, doctors treat the conditions differently.
This article discusses osteoporosis and the two primary forms of arthritis in more detail. It also explores the typical treatment procedures for both conditions. Finally, it answers some common questions about arthritis and osteoporosis.
A note about sex and gender
Sex and gender exist on spectrums. This article will use the terms “male,” “female,” or both to refer to sex assigned at birth. Click here to learn more.
Osteoporosis is a condition that affects a person’s bones. More precisely, scientists define
Some groups of people are at an elevated risk of developing osteoporosis, or osteoporotic fractures. White and Asian individuals are more likely to develop the condition. Additionally, being female is a risk factor for osteoporosis, especially after menopause. The risk of developing osteoporosis increases with age.
Other risk factors for osteoporosis include:
- chronic inflammatory conditions
- using certain medications, such as steroids
- celiac disease
While osteoporosis affects the bones, arthritis is a condition that
There are two main forms of arthritis: osteoarthritis and RA.
Osteoarthritis is the most common type of arthritis, affecting around
Additionally, some people are more prone to developing this form of arthritis due to underlying conditions that affect the joints.
Osteoarthritis primarily arises due to joint wear and tear. As an individual uses their joints over their life, various protective mechanisms in the body may begin to break down. This often involves cartilage erosion, but it may also affect the bones.
Scientists define RA as an autoimmune condition. This means that
The result of this reaction is damage to the joints due to inflammation. Over time, this can lead to joint erosion. RA affects around
There are some similarities between arthritis and osteoporosis treatments. For example, doctors may recommend exercise for both. However, there are many significant differences between the typical treatments for these conditions.
In the case of arthritis, doctors
- weight loss
- physical therapy
- using a brace
They may also recommend a person stops smoking or reduces their alcohol consumption.
Dietary supplements are very important for people with osteoporosis, as they can make it
Contrastingly, dietary supplementation is not an essential part of arthritis treatment.
It is common for healthcare professionals to
Below are some of the most common questions about osteoporosis and arthritis.
Is there a connection between osteoporosis and arthritis?
Although this does not happen in all cases, osteoporosis can be a complication of RA. In fact, people with RA are
What are the symptoms of osteoporosis arthritis?
There is no such condition as osteoporosis arthritis. There is osteoporosis, and arthritis is a separate condition, which divides into rheumatoid arthritis and osteoarthritis.
Osteoporosis and arthritis have different symptoms. Osteoporosis causes
Common symptoms of arthritis
- joint pain
- joint stiffness
- decreased range of motion in the joints
A person should speak with a doctor if they think they have either condition.
Will a bone density test show arthritis?
Doctors may use a DEXA scan to determine if someone might have low bone density. This can help diagnose osteoporosis but is not very useful for detecting arthritis.
However, some types of arthritis affect bone health, so a DEXA scan may be beneficial for a person with arthritis.
Although the progression of both conditions can cause pain around the bones and joints, arthritis and osteoporosis are different conditions. Arthritis is an inflammation of the joints, which can arise due to an autoimmune reaction or joint usage over time. Low mineral density in the bones causes osteoporosis.
A doctor will usually recommend different treatments for each condition. However, exercise and lifestyle changes may benefit people with both conditions.
A person should speak with a doctor for further information about arthritis and osteoporosis.