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Analgesics for Osteoarthritis—An Update

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Background: Characteristics of Osteoarthritis

Osteoarthritis is a chronic condition involving degeneration of cartilage within the joints. It is the most common form of arthritis and is associated with pain, substantial disability, and reduced quality of life. Twenty seven million adults in the United States are thought to have clinical osteoarthritis. Osteoarthritis is more common with increasing age and accounts for more disability in walking, stair climbing, and other tasks requiring use of the lower extremities than any other disease, particularly in the elderly.