Frontiers in Osteoarthritis: Executive Summary of the Scientific Meeting
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- Goldring, S. & Wright, T. HSS Jrnl (2012) 8: 2. doi:10.1007/s11420-011-9230-3
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Osteoarthritis (OA) is the most common form of arthritis and represents the leading cause of disability in the USA. Importantly, with an aging population, the prevalence, impact, and economic consequences of OA will rise dramatically within the next decades. Although much has been learned concerning the factors that play a role in the initiation and progression of OA, this information has not been effectively translated into individual or public health strategies that have significantly altered the natural history of this disabling form of arthritis. While total joint arthroplasty is an effective treatment for the late stages of OA, no validated pharmacologic interventions exist for effectively eliminating pain and restoring function during disease progression.
Although initially regarded as a disease of articular cartilage, numerous lines of investigation have established that OA represents an example of total “organ failure,” in which every component of the joint tissues, including the cartilage, synovium, periarticular bone, and connective tissues, is affected by the disease process. Given OA’s pleiotropic effects on joint tissues, the development of effective diagnostic, preventative, and treatment strategies requires a broad interdisciplinary approach that embraces multiple scientific and public health disciplines. This need formed the basis for the sponsorship of the “Osteoarthritis Summit: Frontiers in OA Research, Prevention, and Care” that was held at the Hospital for Special Surgery in New York in June, 2011, the results of which are published in this issue of the HSS Journal.
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