A painful, chronic, degenerative disease of the joints. The gradual destruction of cartilage with secondary bone resorption and formation of marginal bone – osteophytes and free body – corpo libero.
The destruction of the cartilage occurs under the influence of enzymes of synovial fluid – cartilage loses water, shine, elasticity, becomes rough with erosion and necrosis. Replaces the connective tissue.
Over time, bone changes, subchondral bone proliferous and thickens, creating a sclerosated bone as ivory- eburnatino. Later changes occur to the surrounding tissue, joint space narrowing and the ends of bones becoming uneven.
Osteoarthritis most commonly attacks the individual joints: the hip (coxarthrosis), knee (gonarthrosis), spine (spondylarthrosis).