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Knee pain when climbing the stairs could be first signs of arthritis

4th February 2015

People experiencing knee pain when climbing the stairs could be demonstrating the first signs of arthritis. According to a survey, which was completed by almost 5,000 men and women, a large number of participants experienced knee problems during various activities, and the majority of these were found to be at high risk of developing the condition later in life.

The respondents taking part in the research were asked to fill in an annual survey for a total of seven years, which asked a variety of questions regarding the pain in their joints. The findings revealed that a high proportion of the volunteers who experienced knee pain when climbing the stairs saw the pain occur when walking later down the line. For some this continued, with pain then occurring when seated and even when lying in bed.

Detecting the condition early could help prevent further damage

The discovery by Leeds University that knee pain may be an early indicator for the condition is extremely helpful; if arthritis is diagnosed sooner, there are a number of preventative measures that can ease the symptoms later in life. Arthritis is often left undiagnosed until the very late stages when sometimes surgery is the only option as the joints are so badly damaged.

Methods such as losing weight can make a huge difference to those with arthritis, and exercise has been deemed a great way for strengthening muscles, which can, in turn, take the strain off the joints. Home adaptations such as stairlifts can also help those who experience knee pain when climbing the stairs.

There are currently eight million people in the UK suffering from arthritis and numbers are increasing due to the ageing population, so early diagnosis could be key in preventing cases from needing hospital treatment such as knee replacement operations.

Image Credit: Becky Stern (

This news article is from Handicare UK. Articles that appear on this website are for information purposes only.