Let’s Talk Osteoarthritis Pain: A Picture of Daily Life


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Approximately 31 million adults in the United States have osteoarthritis, or OA.1 For many people, OA can make it difficult to participate in daily activities most of us may take for granted – like housework, getting dressed2 and spending time with family and friends.3

But the effects of OA can reach far beyond those who are diagnosed4 with this debilitating condition.5 In fact, OA can place a substantial burden not just on patients,6 but also on those who care for them7 and society as a whole.4 For example, family caregivers of those living with OA may struggle with the physical and emotional work of caring for their loved one, as well as changes in reciprocal roles.7

On a larger scale, in addition to direct costs such as healthcare costs,4 OA contributes to indirect costs such as missed workdays, presenteeism and forced early retirement.6

To help shed light on this “ripple effect” of chronic OA pain, we partnered with C. Grace Whiting, President and CEO of the National Alliance for Caregiving, to embark on a series of discussions with a physician, patients and caregivers. Learn more about their experiences with OA in the below videos.

Addressing Unmet Needs in Treating Chronic OA Pain

Dr. Jonathan Vigdorchik, an orthopedic surgeon, discusses the unmet needs he sees on a day-to-day basis when treating chronic OA pain, as well as the burden OA places on patients, their families and society.

Persevering with Chronic OA Pain

Barbara Benjamin, who lives with chronic OA pain, reflects on the challenges her OA posed for her when she was working toward her doctorate in nursing.

Supporting Loved Ones with OA

Ann Sullivan, living with chronic OA pain, and her daughter Lizzie share helpful perspectives for people living with OA and their family members who care for them.

For More Information about OA

You can learn more about OA and tips for managing arthritis pain at GetHealthyStayHealthy.com.

1Cisternas MG, Murphy L, Sacks JJ, et al. Alternative Methods for Defining Osteoarthritis and the Impact on Estimating Prevalence in a US Population-Based Survey. Arthritis Care & Research. 2016;68(5):578.
2Fautrel B, Hilliquin P, Rozenberg S, et al. Impact of Osteoarthritis: Results of a Nationwide Survey of 10,000 Patients Consulting for OA. Joint Bone Spine. 2005;72(3):238.
3Siviero P, Veronese N, Smith T, et al. Association Between Osteoarthritis and Social Isolation: Data From the EPOSA Study. Journal of the American Geriatrics Society. 2020;68:87-95.
4White HG, Birnbaum HG, Janagap C, et al. Direct and Indirect Costs of Pain Therapy for Osteoarthritis in an Insured Population in the United States. Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine. 2008;50(9):998-1005.
5Litwic A, Edwards M, Dennison E, et al. Epidemiology and burden of osteoarthritis. British Medical Bulletin. 2013;105:185-99.
6Hunter DJ, Schofield D, Callander E. The individual and socioeconomic impact of osteoarthritis. Nature Reviews Rheumatology. 2014;10:437-441. doi: 10.1038/nrrheum.2014.44.
7Barker KL, Minns Lowe CJ, et al. ‘It is a Big Thing’: Exploring the Impact of Osteoarthritis from the Perspective of Adults Caring for Parents – The Sandwich Generation. Musculoskeletal Care. 2016;15:49-58.

The effects of OA can reach far beyond those who are diagnosed with this debilitating condition. In fact, OA can place a substantial burden not just on patients, but also on society.
Dr. Jonathan Vigdorchik
Orthopedic Surgeon

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