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Blood Test May Predict Knee Osteoarthritis 8 Years in Advance

Blood Test offers early Detection of Knee Osteoarthritis

United States: According to a recent study, a blood test may be able to detect knee osteoarthritis symptoms for at least eight years before they manifest on X-rays. A limited set of biomarkers identified the women with osteoarthritis from the control group of two hundred white British women, half of them has been treated with this and half are not.

“We set up we were suitable to identify people who are at threat for knee osteoarthritis, but what was instigative was that we were suitable to identify it eight times before they had anyX-ray changes,” said elderly study authorDr. Virginia Byers Kraus, a professor in the departments of Medicine, Pathology and Orthopedic Surgery at Duke University School of Medicine, in Durham,N.C.

Preventive Potential

The study has published recently in the journal Science Advances that builds on previous research where the blood test demonstrated with 74 percent of accuracy in predicting the knee arthritis progression and 85 percent accuracy in diagnosing the knee arthritis.

 In the US, almost 35 million persons suffer from knee arthritis. Even though there are no treatments for the condition, early diagnosis and halting its development may be crucial to the effectiveness of novel treatments.

Lifestyle Modifications:

The researchers stressed that knee osteoarthritis is a chronic condition that is usually discovered late in life, much like heart disease, osteoporosis, or Alzheimer’s disease. According to the researchers, by diagnosing it early, medical professionals may be able to stop the sickness before it becomes incapacitating.

This is particularly significant since, up until now, osteoarthritis has only been conceptualized as a condition characterized by abnormalities in X-rays. However, it turns out that there are actually a lot of things happening before that, and by recognizing it much earlier, we can stop the impairment, discomfort, and decline in quality of life

Kraus states that patients may choose to alter their lifestyle to include losing weight, exercising, eating a healthy diet, or even receiving steroid injections if a blood test indicates that they have a high chance of developing osteoarthritis in their knees.

Researchers also noted that, in addition to being extremely unpleasant for patients, knee osteoarthritis is the primary cause of joint replacement surgeries, which imposes a significant financial burden.

Stephen Messier, a Wake Forest University health and exercise science professor and an Arthritis Foundation-funded researcher, expressed similar worries that those who experience the X-ray alterations typically experience,” Kraus stated.

Financial Implications:

Visual Representation. Credit | Getty images

According to Messier, “the burden of osteoarthritis [OA] keeps rising, driving higher healthcare costs and poorer patient outcomes.” “Early identification of knee OA could enable healthcare professionals to take action sooner and lessen patients’ pain and functional loss before joint replacement surgery is required.”

Before the exam is made available to the general public, further study is necessary to validate it. Additionally, only white women were tested for this, and a larger patient group should be included in future research.

Future Directions:

Kraus claims that in addition to OA, rheumatoid arthritis, and gout, there are around 100 more kinds of arthritis that can affect joints other than the knee. In order to determine whether the patients’ hands, hips, and spines are equally impacted, future research will look at these areas.

All things considered, the researchers pointed out that the use of a blood test might help design early and focused interventions for individuals who would not have been diagnosed with osteoarthritis in their knees in the past.

“The first is that osteoarthritis is not just a disease of the elderly; it can also affect younger people, particularly those who have experienced a major joint injury,” Kraus said. “The second is that lifestyle management is extremely important, regardless of the risk of chronic illness.”

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