Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Light exercise may prevent osteoarthritis, study suggests

Date:
November 29, 2010
Source:
Radiological Society of North America
Summary:
People at risk for osteoarthritis may be able to delay the onset of the disease or even prevent it with simple changes to their physical activity, according to a new study.

This figure shows three color-coded T2 maps overlaid on first-echo MR images that show (A) high lateral tibia T2 values in a sedentary individual; (B) low lateral tibia T2 values in a light exerciser; (C) high lateral tibia T2 values in a moderate-strenuous exerciser who had risk factors for osteoarthritis.
Credit: Image courtesy of Radiological Society of North America

People at risk for osteoarthritis may be able to delay the onset of the disease or even prevent it with simple changes to their physical activity, according to a study presented November 29 at the annual meeting of the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA).

"According to the results of our study, participating in a high-impact activity, such as running, more than one hour per day at least three times a week appears associated with more degenerated cartilage and potentially a higher risk for development of osteoarthritis," said the study's senior author Thomas M. Link, M.D., professor of radiology and chief of musculoskeletal imaging at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF). "On the other hand, engaging in light exercise and refraining from frequent knee-bending activities may protect against the onset of the disease."

Osteoarthritis is a degenerative joint disease that causes pain, swelling and stiffness. According to the National Institute of Arthritis and Musculoskeletal and Skin Diseases, osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis and affects an estimated 27 million Americans over the age of 25.

For the study, the researchers recruited 132 asymptomatic participants at risk for knee osteoarthritis who were enrolled in the National Institutes of Health Osteoarthritis Initiative, as well as 33 age- and body mass index-matched controls. Study participants included 99 women and 66 men between the ages of 45 and 55. The participants were separated into three exercise and strength-training levels, based on their responses to the Physical Activity Scale for the Elderly (PASE) questionnaire. Exercise levels included sedentary, light exercisers and moderate to strenuous exercisers, strength-training groups included none, minimal and frequent. Knee-bending activities were also analyzed.

MRI exams revealed that light exercisers had the healthiest knee cartilage among all exercise levels, and patients with minimal strength training had healthier cartilage than patients with either no strength training or frequent strength training.

Moderate to strenuous exercise in women who did any amount of strength training was associated with higher water content and more degenerated collagen architecture in the knee.

"The results for this group indicate that moderate to strenuous exercise may accelerate cartilage degeneration, putting these women at even greater risk of developing osteoarthritis," said study coauthor Keegan K. Hovis, B.S., R.N., research associate in the Department of Radiology at UCSF.

In addition, the findings showed that frequent knee-bending activities, such as climbing up at least 10 flights of stairs a day, lifting objects weighing more than 25 pounds, or squatting, kneeling or deep knee bending for at least 30 minutes per day, were associated with higher water content and cartilage abnormalities.

According to Dr. Link, known risk factors for cartilage degeneration include excess weight, knee injuries, frequent knee bending and severe or strenuous physical activity.

"People can reduce their risk for osteoarthritis by maintaining a healthy weight and avoiding risky activities and strenuous exercise," he said. "Lower-impact sports, such as walking, swimming or using an elliptical trainer are likely more beneficial than high-impact sports, such as running or tennis."

"Our findings indicate that light exercise, particularly frequent walking, is a safer choice in maintaining healthy cartilage," Hovis added.

Other coauthors are Christoph Stehling, M.D., Jean-Baptiste Pialat, M.D., Michael C. Nevitt, Ph.D., M.P.H., and Charles E. McCulloch, Ph.D.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Radiological Society of North America. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Radiological Society of North America. "Light exercise may prevent osteoarthritis, study suggests." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 29 November 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101129101912.htm>.
Radiological Society of North America. (2010, November 29). Light exercise may prevent osteoarthritis, study suggests. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 25, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101129101912.htm
Radiological Society of North America. "Light exercise may prevent osteoarthritis, study suggests." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/11/101129101912.htm (accessed April 25, 2014).

Share This



More Health & Medicine News

Friday, April 25, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Deadly Fungus Killing Bats, Spreading in US

Deadly Fungus Killing Bats, Spreading in US

AP (Apr. 24, 2014) A disease that has killed more than six million cave-dwelling bats in the United States is on the move and wildlife biologists are worried. White Nose Syndrome, discovered in New York in 2006, has now spread to 25 states. (April 24) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Companies Ramp Up Wellness to Lower Health Costs

Companies Ramp Up Wellness to Lower Health Costs

AP (Apr. 24, 2014) That little voice telling you to exercise, get in shape and get healthy is probably coming from your boss. More companies are beefing up wellness programs to try and cut down their health care costs. (April 24) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Blood From World's Oldest Woman Suggests Life Limit

Blood From World's Oldest Woman Suggests Life Limit

Newsy (Apr. 24, 2014) Scientists say for the extremely elderly, their stem cells might reach a state of exhaustion. This could limit one's life span. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
FDA Wants To Ban Sales Of E-Cigarettes To Minors

FDA Wants To Ban Sales Of E-Cigarettes To Minors

Newsy (Apr. 24, 2014) The Food and Drug Administration wants to crack down on the use of e-cigarettes, banning the sale of the product to minors. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins