Using the Osteoarthritic Femur to Identify Impairment Potential in Archaeological Populations

Title: Using the Osteoarthritic Femur to Identify Impairment Potential in Archaeological Populations
Authors: Young, Janet
Date: 2013
Abstract: Osteoarthritis (OA) is the leading cause of disability in North American and has major economic consequences for society. People with knee OA experience the worst quality of life, among musculoskeletal conditions, with function and mobility being influenced by symptoms such as pain and stiffness. However, the impact of OA symptoms varies due to intrinsic and extrinsic factors, leading many researchers to employ biopsychosocial and other population health frameworks to study the disease. These population health approaches have not been adopted when studying knee OA outcomes in bioarchaeology, where a limited biological lens prevails due to the sole reliance on skeletal remains. The purpose of this research was to explore methods for identifying the impairment potential of knee OA in archaeological populations using a clinical sample and population health approaches. Clinical studies have the advantage of assessing not only the biological implications of knee OA but also the functional outcomes. By creating a knee OA grading system applicable for both MRI and dry bone femora samples (Clinical Archaeological Osteoarthritis Score) a link between clinical and archaeological populations was proposed. Using this link to infer functional deficits onto archaeological populations using population health frameworks, a theoretical analysis was performed with two populations; the 17th century Huron and the 19th century Inuit from the Igloolik region of Nunavut. The results demonstrated the increased impairment potential of knee OA in the Inuit population versus the Huron population, produced by contrasting factors captured by the determinants of health, including social and physical environments.
CollectionThèses, 2011 - // Theses, 2011 -