A new scientific study claims to have identified a key risk-factor for development of osteoarthritis.
Canadian researchers have found that people who have one leg longer than the other are more likely to develop osteoarthritis in the knee.
While having different leg lengths is not known to be a direct cause of osteoarthritis, the findings may allow people to take appropriate preventative measures, according to Dr Derek Cooke, professor at Queen's University in Ontario and a co-author of the study.
Dr Cooke said: "Most paediatricians adopt a 'wait and see' attitude for children with limb misalignment when they're growing.
"If we can spot factors creating changes in alignment early in bone development, theoretically we could stop or slow down the progression of osteoarthritis."
Many people have different leg lengths, which often goes unnoticed until they are diagnosed with osteoarthritis, Dr Cooke claims.
A recent study conducted in Germany claims that the injection of sex hormones into joint fluid can stimulate the regenerative ability of cartilage, which could be used as treatment for osteoarthritis.
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