Q. Do I have osteoarthritis?

Answered by
Dr. Sadaf Mustafa
and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team.
This is a premium question & answer published on May 27, 2016 and last reviewed on: Jun 20, 2019

Hi doctor,

I am a 24 year old female. My BMI is normal. I am fairly active on my feet all day because of work and I used to walk instead of transport. I was a lot more active when I was younger. I used to dance for roughly 20 hours a week and swim five hours a week. Since I have got older and due to injury, I dance for 2 hours a week and swim when I get a chance. I was diagnosed with Osgood-Schlatters in both knees when I was 16 and had physio for a year. They used to swell drastically and I still have prominent bony lumps just below both the kneecaps. The only thing that really seemed to help is drastically cutting down exercise as they would become so painful that I could barely walk. The pain comes and goes after an active day at work such as cycling, swimming, driving a long distance or sitting for a long period of time as I am 5'10", it is regular. I have also noticed recently that I have been getting neck and lower back pain as well as regularly feeling like I have strained my right shoulder. I have tried to pass it off as just pain, but it is becoming too often to be a coincidence and cannot help thinking it is linked. I have looked online and read a bit about osteoarthritis and this seems to fit what I have been finding. But, I do not want to jump into conclusion. Do you have any idea what this could be and whether it is linked? Is there anything that I can do prevent it other than cold compression? Thanks in advance.

Dr. Sadaf Mustafa

General Medicine Internal Medicine


Welcome to icliniq.com.

  • It does seem like osteoarthritis, but I would suggest ruling out rheumatological diseases as well and check vitamin D and repeat it.
  • For your shoulder I would like to know how much is your range of motion.

The Probable causes:

1. Osteoarthritis.
2. Overuse injury.
3. Rheumatological diseases (less likely).

Investigations to be done:

1. Complete blood count (CBC).
2. Antinuclear antibody (ANA).
3. X-ray of the shoulder with Y-view and x-ray of the cervical and lumbar region.

Differential diagnosis:

1. Most likely degenerative joint disease (DJD).
2. Osteoarthritis of cervical and lumbar vertebrae and shoulder joint.
3. Less likely rotator cuff injury for shoulder and nerve impingement of the lumbar (lower back) area.

Treatment plan:

1. Ibuprofen 400-600 mg every 8 hours as needed for pain. Should take the tablet with food and do not take it empty stomach.
2. Muscle relaxant like Cyclobenzaprine 10 mg every 12 hours on as needed basis. You should not drive while taking it.
3. Physiotherapy would be very helpful.

Preventive measures:

1. Minimize your exercise to three times a week and strengthening exercise encouraged.
2. Use braces (knee brace and back support).

Regarding follow up:

Revert back with the reports to an orthopaedician and traumatologist online.--->https://www.icliniq.com/ask-a-doctor-online/orthopaedician-and-traumatologist

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