Radiographic osteoarthritis and serum cholesterol

Saudi Med J. 2003 Jul;24(7):745-7.


Objective: To find out the relationship between radiographic osteoarthritis (OA) of the knee, generalized OA and serum cholesterol.

Methods: Over a period of 7 months from September 1998 through to March 1999, 246 patients attending 14 primary care clinics in Northern Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, for different non-musculoskeletal complaints were recruited in the study. Their knees, hands and wrists were radiographed. Their ages, sex, weight, height, body mass index (BMI), fasting serum cholesterol, triglycerides and uric acid were recorded.

Results: There were 113 females and 133 males with average ages 46 14.2 and 51.54 16.0 years. One hundred and twenty-two (49.6%) cases of knee OA and 58 (23.6%) cases of generalized OA were found and analyzed for the association with serum cholesterol levels. Crude odds ratio (OR) for the relationship between knee OA and the third tertile of serum cholesterol was 2.33 (95% CI, 1.19-4.58) which on adjusting for age, sex, BMI, serum uric acid and triglycerides were 2.68 (95% CI, 2.00-3.64). For generalized OA, the crude odds ratio (OR) in relation to the third tertile of serum cholesterol was 1.65 (95% CI, 0.78-3.53), adjusted OR was 2.18 (95% CI, 1.55-3.15).

Conclusion: The results showed an association between high serum cholesterol level and both knee and generalized OA.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Cholesterol / blood*
  • Cross-Sectional Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Osteoarthritis / diagnostic imaging*
  • Osteoarthritis, Knee / diagnostic imaging*
  • Radiography


  • Cholesterol