In recent years, several papers that report an association between atherosclerosis (AS) and osteoarthritis (OA) have been published. Studying this relation is, however, not a sinecure owing to the multifactorial nature of these diseases and their long lead-in times. In this review, we discuss the evidence that is currently available for the association between OA and both subclinical AS and AS-related cardiovascular disease (CVD) events. We found that evidence from most studies points toward an association between AS and OA in the hands or knee of particularly postmenopausal women. Further, we investigate the possibilities and evidence for an explanation of this association. There is some evidence that AS might influence the progression of OA. Thus far, no studies have investigated possible common pathways that lead to the co-development of both diseases. However, ample literature that suggests possibilities for these pathways is available, and many of these pathways are linked to the innate immune system. Understanding the exact nature of how AS and OA are linked together might lead to new biomarkers and common treatments for these diseases in subgroups of patients.

Additional Metadata
Keywords Atherosclerosis, Osteoarthritis
Persistent URL dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.berh.2018.08.006, hdl.handle.net/1765/110293
Journal Bailliere's Best Practice & Research: Clinical Rheumatology
Citation
Bierma-Zeinstra, S.M, & Waarsing, J.H. (2018). The role of atherosclerosis in osteoarthritis. Bailliere's Best Practice & Research: Clinical Rheumatology. doi:10.1016/j.berh.2018.08.006