Indian Journal of Community Medicine

: 2007  |  Volume : 32  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 77--78

An epidemiological study of correlates of osteo-arthritis in geriatric population of UT Chandigarh

MK Sharma, HM Swami, V Bhatia, A Verma, SPS Bhatia, G Kaur 
 Department of Community Medicine, Govt. Medical College & Hospital, Chandigarh- 160 032, India

Correspondence Address:
M K Sharma
Department of Community Medicine, Govt. Medical College & Hospital, Chandigarh- 160 032

How to cite this article:
Sharma M K, Swami H M, Bhatia V, Verma A, Bhatia S, Kaur G. An epidemiological study of correlates of osteo-arthritis in geriatric population of UT Chandigarh.Indian J Community Med 2007;32:77-78

How to cite this URL:
Sharma M K, Swami H M, Bhatia V, Verma A, Bhatia S, Kaur G. An epidemiological study of correlates of osteo-arthritis in geriatric population of UT Chandigarh. Indian J Community Med [serial online] 2007 [cited 2021 Mar 6 ];32:77-78
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Full Text

There has been a remarkable increase in the growth of the elderly population. In India 5.3% of males and 4.8% of females are aged more than 65 years. Although the proportionate percentage of elderly people in developing countries is lesser but absolute number is more than the developed world. Old age cannot be healed or prevented. However much can be done by health workers in helping the elderly to lead a normal life, which is necessary for them to perform their activities of daily living (ADL) smoothly. The commonest obstacle for elderly to carry out ADL is the problem of joint-pain and decreased mobility. Worldwide osteo-arthritis is the most common articular disease of people 65 years and older [1] . It represents a major cause of disability in the United States. The prevalence of this disorder in certain elderly group is as high as 85%. There is a rise in the annual consultation rate for osteo-arthritis. An attempt has been made in this study to find out the prevalence of osteo-arthritis and its relation with age, obesity, overweight, place of residence and anaemia amongst elderly of UT, Chandigarh.

 Material and Methods

The study was conducted in the urban and rural areas in the UT, Chandigarh during the year 1999. Sampling was done from 9 sectors in the urban areas and from 7 villages in the rural areas. A team comprising of doctors, medical social workers and lab technicians was given training in the deptt. of community medicine to enable uniform collection of data. A list of all houses in 9 randomly selected sectors of city was made. Households for study were selected by systematic random sampling technique. The data was collected by house to house survey on a pre-designed and pre-tested format. Osteoarthritis was considered if an elderly was suffering from pain/swelling/limitation of movement of larger joint or if one has already been diagnosed as having osteoarthritis or has been on treatment [5] . The body mass index (BMI), was calculated by the standard formula. A BMI of more than 25 was considered as overweight and one over 30 as obese. The prevalence of osteoarthritis was determined separately for anaemic & non-anaemic elderly. The males with haemoglobin concentration of 85 years. The overall prevalence of osteo-arthritis in elderly of UT, Chandigarh was 56.6%; in rural areas it was 32.6% and in urban, it was 60.3%. (p [2] , while it was 17% amongst the elderly of rural areas of Wardha (Maharastra) [3] . In Aligarh the prevalence of osteo-arthritis was 30.2% [4] .

Present study showed significant difference in the prevalence of osteo-arthritis in elderly of rural & urban areas. The low prevalence of osteo-arthritis in rural elderly could be due to differences in their life style. Rural elderly are usually more mobile, (in present study also limitation of movements in rural elderly was significantly less than in urban elderly) have less obesity compared to urban elderly and have better social­interactions. The last factor makes rural elderly to divert their minds away from symptoms. It was seen in the present study that peak prevalence of osteo-arthritis was among the elderly of age group 84 year and older. As degeneration increases with age, osteo-arthritis also increases with age. This has been demonstrated by many studies including one by Kumar [5] . The prevalence of osteo-arthritis was almost 100% among the severely obese elderly as against 51.36% among the non-obese. Felson has estimated that obesity is the number one preventable cause of osteo-arthritis. The higher prevalence of osteo-arthritis among persons of both sexes having anaemia is as per expectation because such individuals become weak and low tolerants of disease symptoms and present/complain with health care providers more frequently. A high morbidity of osteoarthritis among elderly needs strengthening of geriatric health care services both community based and hospital based. A programme needs to be developed to provide facilities in the form of early diagnosis, counselling, diet control, correction of anaemia, regular exercise and physiotherapy in addition to treatment.


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