What causes osteoarthritis of the knee?
Many factors can increase your risk of osteoarthritis of the knee. It’s most common if:
- you’re in your late 40s or older – this might be because your muscles have become weaker, your body is less able to heal itself or your joints have gradually worn out over time
- you’re a woman – osteoarthritis is more common and more severe in women
- you’re overweight – this increases the chances of developing osteoarthritis and of it becoming gradually worse
- your parents or siblings have had osteoarthritis
- you’ve had a knee injury, for example a torn meniscus
- you've had an operation on your knee, for example a meniscectomy (to remove damaged cartilage) or repairs to your cruciate ligaments
- you do a hard, repetitive activity or a physically demanding job, for example farming or mining
- you have another type of joint disease which has damaged your joints, for example rheumatoid arthritis or gout.
Arthritis Research UK has recently awarded a grant to investigating the use of new drugs to treat early-onset osteoarthritis caused by injury.