What’s the Difference Between Osteoporosis and Osteoarthritis?

Jul 15, 2021 | Blog

Both osteoarthritis and osteoporosis can have major impacts on your life. But while the terms sound similar, they actually describe very different conditions. So what’s the difference between osteoporosis and osteoarthritis? Get the details in the article below.

What is Osteoporosis?

Osteoporosis is when a person’s bones become thinner and more brittle. This weakening of the bones makes them more prone to injury. Osteoporosis becomes more common as a person ages. While it can happen to anyone, post-menopausal women are at the highest risk, as their bodies produce less of the bone-healthy hormone estrogen.

What is Osteoarthritis?

Osteoarthritis (OA) is a type of arthritis, which causes joint inflammation, stiffness, and pain. It’s the most common form of arthritis, and it is usually caused by wear and tear on your joints as you age. Osteoarthritis can also affect anyone, though certain factors can put you at a higher risk. The symptoms of OA tend to get worse as the disease progresses. Working with a doctor early will help you manage your symptoms most effectively.

The Difference Between Osteoporosis and Osteoarthritis

What is the difference between osteoporosis and osteoarthritis? Actually, quite a bit. While the diseases have similar names, they are not related conditions. Osteoporosis affects a person’s bones, whereas OA affects a person’s joints. Another key difference is that OA can cause many painful symptoms, whereas osteoporosis might not produce symptoms at all.

Talking to Your Doctor

While these two diseases are very different, they have one important thing in common: they both require a doctor’s care. Both osteoporosis and OA can majorly impact your life. But, while neither are reversible, they can be managed with a doctor’s care. Because these are life-long conditions, it’s also important to find a doctor your trust. They can monitor your symptoms over time and help you find long-term solutions.

Seeing a Rheumatologist

A rheumatologist can help you manage your symptoms, whether you are struggling with osteoporosis or osteoarthritis. The Rheumatology Clinic of Houston uses state-of-the-art treatments to help you take charge of your bone and joint issues. Explore our website to learn more about what we do. Ready to get started? Click the link above to book your appointment online.