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Contains key statistics and information about arthritis and its prevalence in Australia

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Key statistics

  • Just under 3.7 million (14.5%) people had arthritis in 2022
  • Prevalence of arthritis has remained stable since 2004–05 (15.3%)
  • People aged 75 years and over were more likely than any other age group to have arthritis (48.9%)

These statistics form part of the National Health Survey 2022. More information on other topics of interest from the survey are available on the National Health Survey 2022 page.

This statistical release was previously published under the title Arthritis and osteoporosis.

Arthritis is an umbrella term that refers to a wide range of inflammatory conditions that affect the bones, muscles, and joints. This often results in pain, stiffness, swelling, and redness in affected joints[1].

Arthritis prevalence

Just under 3.7 million people (14.5%) had arthritis in 2022, and this has remained steady since 2004–05 (15.3%).

As with many other chronic conditions, arthritis prevalence increased with age:

  • For people aged 45–54 years, the proportion is almost seven times higher than for those aged 0–44 years (16.2% compared to 2.5%)
  • Prevalence almost doubled between 45–54 years and 55–64 years (16.2% compared to 30.5%)
  • Older adults aged 75 years and over were more likely than any other age group to have arthritis, with almost one in two (48.9%) having arthritis in 2022.

Females were more likely than males to have arthritis (17.0% compared to 12.0%).

  1. Includes rheumatoid arthritis, osteoarthritis, other and type unknown.

Osteoarthritis was the most common type of arthritis in 2022 (57.0%), followed by other arthritis and type unknown (37.3%) and rheumatoid arthritis (13.9%).

Characteristics of people with arthritis

In 2022, people:

  • Who lived in areas of most disadvantage were more likely to have arthritis than those in areas of least disadvantage (18.1% compared to 11.7%)
  • Who lived in Inner Regional Australia were more likely to have arthritis than those in Major Cities (19.9% compared to 12.8%)
  • Living with disability were more likely to have arthritis than those with no disability (31.8% compared to 6.6%)
  • With a measured waist circumference that put them at increased risk were more likely to have arthritis than those at lowered risk (23.1% compared to 9.0%)
  • Who had experienced severe/very severe bodily pain in the four weeks prior to interview were more likely to have arthritis than either moderate (52.6% compared to 35.3%) or very mild/mild bodily pain (52.6% compared to 15.2%).

People who lived in lone person households were more likely to have arthritis than any other household type (32.1%), compared to:

  • Family households with no dependent children present (23.6%)
  • Group households (7.5%)
  • Family households with dependent children present (5.2%).

Data downloads

See the National Health Survey 2022 data downloads for the full suite of available data. Data relating to Arthritis can be found in tables:

  • TABLE 1 Summary health characteristics, 2001 to 2022
  • TABLE 2 Summary health characteristics, by states and territories
  • TABLE 3 Long-term health conditions, by age and sex
  • TABLE 4 Selected long-term health conditions, by population characteristics
  • TABLE 5 Selected long-term health conditions, by health risk factors and health status
  • TABLE 15 Number of chronic conditions, by population characteristics, by age
  • TABLE 16 Comorbidity of selected chronic conditions, by age and sex.


  1. Australian Institute of Health and Welfare, ‘Chronic musculoskeletal conditions: arthritis’,; accessed 15/11/2023.

Media release

See National Health Survey 2022 media release for more information.




  • all usual residents in Australia aged 0+ years living in private dwellings.
  • urban and rural areas in all states and territories, excluding very remote parts of Australia and discrete Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Communities.


The data available includes estimates for:

  • Australia
  • States and territories


The National Health Survey conducted by the Australian Bureau of Statistics.

Medications data from the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme.

Collection method

Face-to-face interview with an Australian Bureau of Statistics Interviewer.

Linkage to the Person Level Integrated Data Asset.  

Concepts, sources and methods

Health conditions are presented using a classification which is based on the 10th revision of the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-10).

History of changes

Full history of changes.

View full methodology
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