Is Arthritis Hereditary?

arthritisWhen you watch your loved one suffer from symptoms of any condition, it can be natural to wonder if you are at risk, too. Conditions like hip arthritis are not entirely random, but they are not always genetic. Carrying certain genes may increase your likelihood of arthritis, but it does not guarantee you will inherit the condition.

Understanding Heritability

When something is hereditary, it can be passed on through genetic code (DNA). Eye color is hereditary, as is albinism and Down syndrome. One common misconception is that heritability means something is guaranteed, but heritability is always an estimate.

It expresses the likelihood of a person having or developing certain qualities based on their DNA.

The Genetic Influence of Arthritis

Different genes are at play when it comes to arthritis. Since there are multiple types of the disease, genetic influences vary. So far, science has revealed that certain types of arthritis have a stronger genetic component than others.

For example, 40-50% of people with osteoarthritis have mutations in a gene responsible for collagen production. This is even more prevalent in people with hand and hip arthritis.

There are over 100 genes linked to rheumatoid arthritis, which is classified as an autoimmune disease. Environmental factors trigger these genes to “turn on”, causing the immune system to attack healthy tissues.

Can You Find Out If You’re at Risk?

Yes, genetic testing can reveal a person’s risk of developing certain types of arthritis in their lifetime. These tests can look for genetic markers such as HLA-DR4 or HLA-DR1, which often indicate a high probability of developing rheumatoid arthritis. They can also check for specific genes based on the type of arthritis you are concerned about.

Genetic tests can reveal a person’s risk of developing arthritis, as well as how their disease is likely to progress. This can help you take preventative measures to preserve mobility and manage your health.

Early Arthritis Symptoms? We Can Help

Contact Specialty Orthopaedics in Harrison, NY, to schedule an appointment with one of our experienced doctors. We offer treatment for all types of arthritis and can customize treatment plans based on your unique symptoms and medical history.

Please submit a contact form or call the office at 914-686-0111 to request a free virtual or in-person consultation.

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