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Is knee osteoarthritis related to coffee drinking? A nationwide cross-sectional observational study



Coffee is one of the most consumed beverages globally, and coffee consumption is increasing. Osteoarthritis (OA), the most common musculoskeletal disease in the elderly, is also becoming more prevalent. Coffee is associated with various diseases, but there has not yet been a study of the relationship between coffee and knee OA. Therefore, we investigated this relationship in elderly Koreans.


Data from 2012 to 2013 were collected from the Korea National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. We included 2302 participants in our study: 897 men and 1405 women. Participants with knee OA were defined as those whose knee joints exhibited radiographic change of Kellgren-Lawrence grade 2 or higher. Daily coffee consumption amounts were categorized as none, < 2 cups, 2–3 cups, 4–6 cups, and ≥ 7 cups based on self-reporting.


A multiple logistic regression model, the odds ratios (ORs) of knee OA in the < 2 cup, 2–3 cup, 4–6 cup, and ≥ 7 cup groups compared to the no-coffee group in men were 1.13 (95% CI 0.50–2.55), 1.79 (95% CI 0.81–3.97), 2.21 (95% CI 0.91–5.35), and 3.81 (95% CI 1.46–12.45), respectively. There was no significant association between coffee consumption and knee OA prevalence in women.


Daily more than 7 cups of coffee drinking was associated with a prevalence of knee OA in Korean men, and although the ORs did not increase significantly across consumption levels, the prevalence of knee OA tended to increase with increasing coffee consumption.

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No grants or other support were received for the conduction of this study.

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Corresponding author

Correspondence to Jae Hyun Jung.

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The KNHANES is a nationwide survey administered by the Korea Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (KCDC), and the institutional review board of the KCDC approved the study (2012-01EXP-01-2C and 2013-07CON-03-4C)



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Bang, C.H., Kim, C., Kim, JH. et al. Is knee osteoarthritis related to coffee drinking? A nationwide cross-sectional observational study. Clin Rheumatol 38, 817–825 (2019).

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  • Coffee
  • Knee osteoarthritis
  • Prevalence