WEDNESDAY, June 9, 2021 (HealthDay News) — Osteoarthritis (OA) may be associated with the risk for developing Parkinson disease (PD), especially among patients with knee or hip OA, according to a study published online June 8 in Arthritis Care & Research.

Shih-Hao Feng, M.D., from the National Taiwan University Hospital Chu-Tung branch, and colleagues conducted a retrospective cohort study using the Taiwan Longitudinal Health Insurance Database 2005 to examine the risk for PD among patients with OA. A total of 33,360 patients aged 50 to 64 years with OA were enrolled and compared to a control group of 33,360 age- and sex-matched individuals without OA.

The researchers found that the risk for developing PD was significantly increased for the OA group (adjusted hazard ratio, 1.41). Relative to the comparison group, the OA group also had significantly lower PD-free survival. In a subgroup analysis, patients with knee or hip OA had an increased magnitude of PD risk compared with those with non-knee and non-hip OA or with uncategorized OA (adjusted hazard ratios, 1.55 versus 1.42 and 1.32, respectively).

“Coexisting osteoarthritis and Parkinson’s disease can additively increase the risk of falling. Moreover, osteoarthritis-related mobility impairments may mask early motor symptoms of Parkinson’s disease,” a coauthor said in a statement. “Health professionals need to be alert to the potential link between these two diseases.”

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