How Does Osteoarthritis Impact Workplace Productivity?

Osteoarthritis is the most common form of arthritis, affecting about 27 million people in the United States. It can cause pain and loss of function in the hands, wrists, hips, knees or spine. While it does not have a cure, many osteoarthritis treatments can relieve pain and improve mobility. However, it can affect your ability to work. It reduces productivity and leads to absenteeism or early retirement. In this article, we’ll discuss how osteoarthritis affects workplace productivity and how employers can help their employees with osteoarthritis stay productive while working.

Impact of osteoarthritis on workplace productivity

Osteoarthritis is a degenerative joint disease that can lead to significant pain and disability. The condition affects the cartilage, or the cushion between bones in your joints, causing inflammation and pain. If you suffer from osteoarthritis, it can impact your productivity at work in several ways:

  • You may need to take frequent breaks throughout the day due to discomfort or pain
  • Your ability to perform physical activities like lifting heavy objects may be limited
  • You may have difficulty climbing stairs or getting in and out of a car
  • You may feel less motivated to work because of pain and fatigue
  • You may experience depression and anxiety as a result of your condition

osteoarthritis treatment

Benefits of addressing

Osteoarthritis is not just an inconvenience. It’s a serious disease that can significantly impact your employees’ abilities to do their jobs. The sooner you address osteoarthritis, the better off your business will be.

  • Reduce the cost of absenteeism. When employees are out sick or taking disability leave due to their arthritis symptoms, that means less productivity for your company. This costs employers thousands every year in lost revenue and employee productivity (not to mention how much more expensive it would be if they had to hire someone else).
  • Increase the quality of life for employees with osteoarthritis by reducing pain and discomfort at work so they can focus on doing what they love and keep doing it!
  • Improve health outcomes for people with osteoarthritis who can remain productive members of society rather than being forced into retirement or early retirement. Their condition has worsened due to the current healthcare system’s lack of treatment options.

Strategies for managing

Employee education is a key component of osteoarthritis management in the workplace. Employees should be informed about their condition, its symptoms, and how to manage it at work.

Employees with OA can request assistance from their employer in modifying tasks or duties. It puts stress on certain joints and relieves tension in those areas. Also, it gives breaks from long periods of sitting or standing and enough time to rest between tasks or shifts. Employers might also think about programs like walking meetings that get people moving during breaks.


Osteoarthritis has a significant impact on workplace productivity. It’s important to figure out what causes these losses in productivity so that we can come up with good ways to deal with osteoarthritis in the workplace. San Diego Sports Medicine & Orthopaedic Center, Inc. provides effective diagnosis and treatment for individuals suffering from osteoarthritis in their hip or knee. If you are one of the millions of Americans experiencing stiffness or pain, our team of doctors can assist you. Contact them right now!


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