HealthDay News — A decrease in body mass index (BMI) is independently associated with lower odds of onset and progression of the structural defects of knee osteoarthritis, according to a study published online Aug. 16 in Arthritis & Rheumatology.
Zubeyir Salis, from University of New South Wales in Kensington, Australia, and colleagues examined the association between change in BMI and the incidence and progression of the structural defects of knee osteoarthritis as assessed by radiography. The analysis included 9,683 knees (from 5,774 participants) in an “incidence cohort” and 6,075 knees (from 3,988 participants) in a “progression cohort.”
The researchers found that change in BMI was positively associated with both the incidence and progression of the structural defects of knee osteoarthritis. There was also a positive association between change in BMI and degeneration (i.e., narrowing) of joint space and with degeneration of the femoral and tibial surfaces (as indicated by osteophytes) on the medial but not on the lateral side of the knee.
“These findings could be empowering for people with or at risk of knee osteoarthritis,” Salis said in a statement. “The current prevailing view is that knee osteoarthritis is part of ageing and that we have no control over it. However, my analyses suggest that some people could potentially prevent, slow, or delay knee osteoarthritis by losing weight.”
Two authors disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry.