Medical Problems of Performing ArtistsMedical Problems of Performing Artists

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Arthritis in the Aging Musician

Richard A. Hoppmann Evan F. Ekman
From: Medical Problems of Performing Artists: Volume 14 Number 2: Page 80 (June 1999)

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Abstract: Part of the beauty of making music is that it can be done for decades. There are numerous examples of outstanding instrumentalists who have performed well into their eighties and nineties. Individuals should be encouraged to continue to perform and even to learn to play an instrument late in life. The joy of performing, either for oneself or for others, is not precluded by age. Performing may, however, be affected by arthritis. Osteoarthritis is common in the elderly, and the pain and stiffness it causes can adversely affect performance and take some of the enjoyment out of playing. This article reviews osteoarthritis and its treatment with a particular focus on involvement of the hand and neck.

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