Arthritis is a musculoskeletal disease that causes painful inflammation in the joints. And it's the leading cause of disability in the United States, dramatically affecting people's lives and limiting their ability to work and care for themselves and their families.
Medical correspondent Dr. Emily Senay reports on warning signs and treatments Wednesday on The Early Show.
A new study from the Centers for Disease Control shows that the average rate of arthritis is almost 30 percent among the nation's population, a huge number compared to most other diseases. The costs of arthritis and other related diseases were estimated at more than $86 billion in 1997.
Arthritis accounts for 39 million physician visits and more than a half million hospital visits each year. And adults are not the only ones who suffer. Hundreds of thousands of children also have arthritis.
Tune in Wednesday for the complete report.