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Arthritis and Rheumatism

What is Crepitus and What Causes It?

09/24/2008

Question:

I have Crepitis and RA in my elbows. A friend of my mine told me that it is my bone rubbing on another bone and that I would have very little cartlidge left as a result. Is that what causes Crepitis?

Answer:

Crepitus is a grinding sensation or noise. It is most commonly noted in joints but may be used to describe phenomenon in other body parts. Typically, Crepitus is thought to be associated with cartilage loss or degeneration. As the natural joint integrity is lost, the result may be a grinding sensation or noise from within the joint.

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Response by:

Raymond  Hong, MD, MBA, FACR Raymond Hong, MD, MBA, FACR
Formerly, Assistant Professor of Medicine
School of Medicine
Case Western Reserve University