The prevalence of radiographic thumb base osteoarthritis: a meta-analysis

M. J.W. van der Oest*, L. S. Duraku, E. R. Andrinopoulou, R. M. Wouters, S. M.A. Bierma-Zeinstra, R. W. Selles, J. M. Zuidam

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleAcademicpeer-review

7 Citations (Scopus)
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Introduction: Osteoarthritis (OA) affects millions of people worldwide. In hand OA, the thumb base is the most affected single joint. The reported radiographic prevalence ranges from 0 to 100%, making the true radiographic prevalence unclear. Hence, we conducted a meta-analysis on the age and sex-specific prevalence of radiographic thumb base OA. Methods: We performed a search in Embase, Medline Ovid, Web of Science Core Collection, Cochrane Central Register of Trials, and Google Scholar. We included studies of the general population that reported thumb base OA for males and females separately based on a hand radiograph and reported the age of these groups. Using meta-regression, we estimated the odds ratio (OR) of having radiographic thumb base OA for age and sex, while adjusting for within-study correlation. Results: The initial search yielded 4,278 articles; we finally included 16 studies that reported the age- and sex-stratified prevalence. Taken together, there were 104 age and gender specific-prevalence rates that could be derived from the 16 studies. The prevalence of radiographic OA for the 50-year-old male and female participants was 5.8% and 7.3%, respectively, while the respective prevalence for 80-year-old male and female participants was 33.1% and 39.0%. We found an OR for having radiographic OA of 1.06 (95%CI [1.055–1.065], p < 0.001) per increasing year of age, and 1.30 (95%CI: 1.05–1.61], p = 0.014) for females. Conclusion: In the general population, radiographic thumb base OA is more prevalent in females and is strongly associated with age.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)785-792
Number of pages8
JournalOsteoarthritis and Cartilage
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jun 2021


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