Monday, October 25, 2021

1.5 million Nigerians living with arthritis: Experts

Experts say the 1.5 million is a fraction of the global 350 million of people who suffer from arthritis.

• October 11, 2021

The Nigerian Orthopaedic Association (NOA) says 1.5 million Nigerians suffer from arthritis.

President of the association, Kunle Olawepo, made this known in a statement on Monday to commemorate the 2021 World Arthritis Day.

“Arthritis is an inflammatory condition that causes pain and stiffness in the joints, which can worsen with age. The theme for this year’s commemoration is ‘Don’t Delay, Connect Today’.

“It is aimed at drawing attention to seeking early care, leading to appropriate early diagnosis and proper treatment and medical management of the condition.

“People of all ages and sexes can have arthritis and it can lead to disability in human joints,” Mr Olawepo said.

The NOA president listed signs and symptoms of the illness to include swelling, pain, stiffness, decreased motion and warmth and redness in the joint, among others.

He also listed risk factors to include family history, age, previous injury to the joint (Trauma or infection) and excess weight.

Mr Olawepo said that untreated arthritis could lead to deformities such as Bow and K-legs, shortened limbs, due to reduced length and bending of the spine.

He, therefore, advised people to engage in regular exercise to improve motion and reduce weight.

He appealed to the government to provide relevant and appropriate investigative modalities at an easily accessible location throughout the country, provide health insurance to ameliorate the cost of expensive investigations and treatment.

He noted that the treatment should include medication and interventions like joint repair, joint fusion and joint replacement surgeries.


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