My mum meenu, who is 54 has osteoarthritis in both her knees. She weights around 70 kilos and is 5ft 2 inches.Her mother, as well as her four aunts and all her cousins have osteoarthritis. She has recently joained a gym, and for a cardio activity cycles for aroung 10-15 mins. She says that after a week, the cycling has worsened the pain in her knees, and is afraid that cycling will further damage her cartilage. What effect does cycling have on the knees, and if it is infact detremental to her well being, can she engage in any other cardio activity?
Although exercise can worsen pain of osteoarthritis, there is no good proof that it makes the disease worse (meaning it does not cause more cartilage loss). Your mum needs to find exercise she can tolerate. Favorites from my patients include swimming, water aerobics, elliptical trainers and sometimes treadmills.