Obesity is a major issue in the United States and causes many health problems. One of these that we will be discussing in this article is how it impacts joint health.

What is obesity?

Obesity is a medical condition in which excess body fat has accumulated to the extent that it may have an adverse effect on health. Obesity increases the risk of various diseases, particularly heart disease, type 2 diabetes, obstructive sleep apnea, certain types of cancer, and osteoarthritis.

Learn more: How Does Obesity Cause Sleep Apnea

Obesity and arthritis

1. Osteoarthritis:

An osteoarthritis is a common form of arthritis that occurs from wear and tear on the joints. With obesity, more weight is being put through your joints each day, putting you at higher risk for osteoarthritis.

2. Gout:

A gout is a form of inflammatory arthritis most often affecting a joint in the big toe. Obesity can increase uric acid levels, which often leads to gout.

3. Rheumatoid Arthritis:

Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disorder that affects millions of people worldwide and is one of the most common forms of arthritis. The condition causes inflammation, pain, stiffness, and swelling of the joint, and it occurs when the immune system attacks the tissues lining your joints. Obesity also plays a role in rheumatoid arthritis as studies have shown that obese people who lose weight experience less pain, better function, and faster remission times compared to those who maintain their weight.

How are obesity and joint pain related?

There are several ways that obesity can influence how a joint feels and functions:

a) Raised intra-articular pressure:

Extra fat increases the pressure within your joints because there is an increase in the amount of weight that needs to be supported by each bone. Obesity and knee pain thus go hand in hand.

b) Increased contact stress:

When you are obese, there is also often an associated lack of muscle strength which can lead to problems stabilizing the joints, and this may increase the contact stress experienced by your weight-bearing joints.

c) Joint immobility:

Being obese means you are more likely to have difficulty moving around, which can lead to joint stiffness and immobility, further exacerbating any problems.

d) Joint deformity:

Weight gain in itself is often associated with foot pain, commonly known as plantar fasciitis, and this can lead to abnormal gait patterns, which may result in joint deformities. Effects of obesity on bones are also serious.

e) Joint Replacement:

Obesity is one of the biggest risk factors for needing hip, knee, or shoulder replacement surgery. This is due to the extra strain being placed on your joints, causing increased pain and damage, which can lead to joint replacement surgery. In order to reduce any increased intra-articular pressure or contact stress associated with obesity, it is common that the surgeon will recommend a smaller-sized replacement be used. In addition, knee replacement surgery will often involve a thorough lavage of the joint to remove any debris and wash out acid, which can cause pain.


While obesity is a serious health concern with many complications, it is important that you do not lose hope! Getting in touch with a physician or surgeon for Tijuana bariatric is the first step towards achieving a healthier life.