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Osteoarthritis occurs when changes in cartilage cause the cartilage to break down faster than the body can produce it. When cartilage breaks down, the bones rub together and cause damage and pain. Experts don't know why this happens. But things like aging, joint injury, being overweight, and genetics may increase your risk.
In some cases, arthritis is caused by other conditions that damage cartilage.
Symptoms of osteoarthritis can range from mild to severe.
They may include:
Arthritis of the spine can also narrow the openings that make space for the spinal cord and for the nerves that branch off the spinal cord (spinal nerves). This is called spinal stenosis. It can lead to pressure on the spinal cord or spinal nerves. This pressure can cause pain, weakness, or numbness.
Some medical conditions can cause symptoms similar to osteoarthritis, such as joint injuries and other forms of arthritis.
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