There are many similar diseases, including osteochondrosis, osteoarthritis, and osteoporosis, that affect joints and bones. For proper treatment, it is important to find the differences and establish the form of the disease. Despite the identical symptoms and diagnostics, ailments have individual characteristics. It is believed that the disease is caused by old age. However, early detection and a range of preventive measures help prevent the development of the disease in young people.

Osteoarthritis and osteochondrosis are slightly similar problems of human articular tissue.

Differences between osteoarthritis and osteochondrosis

What is osteoarthritis?

Chronic disease of joints and cartilage in the early stages is almost invisible to the patient. At first, these may be minor tingling sensations, which, if improperly treated, develop into a more severe form with limited mobility. The main cause of the disease is a heavy load on the joint or an inactive lifestyle, as well as being overweight. The disease is progressive and can become chronic. There are two forms of osteoarthritis. In the first case, one joint is affected, in the second, several joints.

Osteochondrosis as a type of osteoarthritis

Damage to the cartilage tissue leads to joint deformation. Osteochondrosis and osteoarthritis differ from each other in that intervertebral discs are often affected by chondrosis. The forms of the disease depend on its location – cervical, thoracic and lumbar. With the disease, aching pain syndrome is also common. The disease is a complex lesion. For example, with pain in one section, the symptoms may be given in another.


Osteochondrosis affects the spine of people of all ages, which provokes curvature of posture, and osteoarthritis – other articular tissues of the elderly.

The etiology of the two diseases is not fully understood. Therefore, it is impossible to establish the only reason for the development and progress of diseases. For correct diagnosis, prevention, and early detection of symptoms, it is important to know how osteoarthritis differs from osteochondrosis. The main signs of diseases are presented in the table:

Criterion Osteoarthritis Osteochondrosis
Damage area Joints and cartilage of any joints Cartilage tissue of the vertebrae
Pain Sharp Aching
Forms Chronic Acute, flowing into chronic
Complications Change in synovial fluid Deformation of the inter-articular discs of the spine, which lead to the spread of pain in the cervical spine, arms, legs
Age at risk After 50 years Any age
Classification Varieties depend on the localization of the pathological process

Common features

Causes of osteochondrosis and osteoarthritis

  • Injuries;
  • sedentary lifestyle;
  • overload of joints;
  • elderly age;
  • genetic predisposition;
  • incorrect diagnosis;
  • lack of calcium in the bones;
  • genetic pathology;
  • being overweight;
  • passive lifestyle;
  • improper nutrition.

The main symptoms

Osteoarthritis and osteochondrosis are sources of pain, crunch in the joints, limiting mobility.

sharp pain;Ailments are characterized by the following identical features:

  • muscle spasms;
  • deformation of the joints;
  • crunch;
  • painful sensations with mobility.

The difference between the two diseases is obvious, but early diagnosis and prevention are important for effective, correct therapy.

Treatment of osteochondrosis and osteoarthritis

After the diagnosis is established, a therapeutic process follows, which can be conservative and operational. It depends on the severity of the disease. In the case of an advanced form, surgical intervention is recommended. If surgery can be dispensed with, after a complete diagnosis, a number of treatment methods are prescribed, which include:

  • medications – “Dolobene gel”, “Deep Relief”, “Traumeel”, “Nimid Gel”, “Voltaren”, intramuscular, joint injections;
  • Exercise therapy;
  • physiotherapy;
  • immobilization;
  • rest for the affected joint;
  • massotherapy;
  • manual therapy;
  • therapeutic diet.

The conservative method involves the complex application of treatment methods. With the right choice of therapy, it is possible to prevent the development of a chronic form of osteoarthritis and osteochondrosis, as well as reduce inflammation, pain syndrome and strengthen the musculoskeletal system.


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