Arthritis is often referred to as a single disease.
In fact, it is an umbrella term for more than 100 medical conditions that affect the musculoskeletal system, specifically joints where two or more bones meet.
Arthritis-related problems include pain, stiffness, inflammation and damage to joint cartilage (the tissue that covers the ends of bones, enabling them to move against each another) and surrounding structures.
This can result in joint weakness, instability and deformities that can interfere with the most basic daily tasks such as walking, driving a car and preparing food.
Arthritis is the major cause of disability and chronic pain in Australia, with 3.85million Australians affected at a cost to our economy of more than $23.9 billion each year in medical care and indirect costs such as loss of earnings and lost production.