Survey Finds Arthritis Is Forcing People Into Early Retirement

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15th November 2013 12:39 - Health

New research has revealed that thousands of workers are being forced into early retirement due to suffering from arthritis with up to half a million that may have had to give up work in their 50s as the condition takes its toll. The Poll has discovered that almost one in five of those still in employment have had to make changes in the way they work as a result of the disability with has resulted in one in ten curbing their hours.

Furthermore, the study of 700 people suffering the condition discovered that one in ten osteoarthritis sufferers aged 55 and over claim this has affected their work and even led to two thirds quitting their jobs. Osteoarthritis, which affects joints, particularly knees is thought to be suffered by around 8 million people.  Symptoms of the condition also forced one in twenty sufferers to cancel holidays and stopped them playing with the grandchildren due to knee and back pain.

Professor Philip Conaghan, From The University of Leeds, said:

One of the key issues that this survey highlights is the massive negative impact of osteoarthritis on people in work. With a rapidly ageing population and financial imperatives for us to stay in the work force longer, the consequences will include much more personal anguish and even greater economic burden on society. It is worrying that such a high proportion of osteoarthritis sufferers are giving up careers they have most likely dedicated a significant amount of their life to.”

Reports in 2008 suggested there was an estimated cost of £10 billion on the economy due to people being forced permanent retirement because of either osteoarthritis or rheumatoid arthritis.

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