Osteoarthritis and Rock Climbing

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Posts: 156
Joined: Tue Mar 21, 2006 6:53 pm
Real Name: Danny Pinkas

Osteoarthritis and Rock Climbing

Post by dannypinkas » Wed Nov 01, 2006 7:38 pm

It's great news that researchers have found no link b/w climbing and Osteo. I must show the article to my Orthopod who, 2 weeks ago, diagnosed the condition on my right index finger. Over the past 12 yrs I have trained regularly at the wilds where crimping is a must. From the x rays it is clear that the way I crimp has had a direct bearing on the manner in which the joint has worn out. All other joints on the right hand, which take less strain during crimping are fine. There is also no history of Osteo in my family. Not too disheartened by this, though. Tommy Caldwell lost the better part of his index finger and look at the way he climbs...

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Real Name: Andrew Blanche
Location: Pretoria / Johannesburg

Post by Chalk » Thu Nov 02, 2006 11:44 am

You can’t believe a word the medical profession says (very few manage to score a perfect 100% on their final exams anyway)! I once went for a medical check up and was diagnosed with chronic emphysema and as a result almost had a job application turned down. The diagnosis was swiftly reversed to show “extremely fit, over inflation of lungs due to breath hold diving” - talk about whip lash…

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Real Name: Charles Edelstein
Location: Cape Town


Post by SNORT » Tue Nov 07, 2006 4:19 pm

Osteo-arthritis or OA is a generic term for inflammation (the -itis) of the joints (-arth) and associated bony structures (-osteo). The cause, by and large, is due to damage to the cartilage of the joint secondary to 1. a direct attack by bugs or chemicals (TB or gout etc), 2. alteration of the structural support of the underlying bone and stabilising ligaments (fractures, infections, loss of blood supply and so on) and 3. direct trauma damage to the cartilage itself due to direct impact trauma or repetitive minor trauma (that can also be caused by joint instability after ligament tears). All cartilage wears out with age and certain activities such as climbing may hasten this degeneration by causing repetitive minor trauma. It is my understanding that there is no substansive proof that physiotherapists have a greater chance of OA of the joints of their thumbs even after years of heavy use. Finger tip OA is common even in non-climbers.

Dear Chalk. To qualify as an Orthopaedic surgeon requires a minimum of 14 years study and experience (of which at least 7 years include 80 hour work weeks) before being let loose on the unsuspecting public . There are few if any careers that takes as long and the training as rigorous and arduous even in the other medical specialties.

At least in my generation the selection process to get to study medicine was also one of the most rigorous academically. Even so nobody scores even close to 100% and yet South African medical standards are still considered to be one of the best in the world. But it then begs the question: if the medical profession is so poor then how bad are the other professions that let loose their members on the public with much less training and experience. Sometimes with as little as 3 or 4 years training and little or no experience?

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