Home
Knee1 Headlines

Surgical Repair Of Knee Injuries Does Not Decrease Risk Of Osteoarthritis

Printer Friendly Version     Email this Article     Links/Reprints

Surgical Repair Of Knee Injuries Does Not Decrease Risk Of Osteoarthritis

July 06, 2010
Source: Radiological Society of North America

Arthroscopic surgical repair of torn anterior cruciate ligaments (ACL) or meniscal cartilage injuries in the knee does not decrease the chances of developing osteoarthritis, according to a new study published in the online edition and August print issue of the journal Radiology.

A decade after the initial injuries were diagnosed using MRI, localized knee osteoarthritis was evident in patients, regardless of whether or not the injuries had been surgically repaired.

"This study proves that meniscal and cruciate ligament lesions increase the risk of developing specific types of knee osteoarthritis," said Kasper Huétink, M.D., the study's lead author and resident radiologist at Leiden University Medical Center in the Netherlands. "Surgical therapy does not decrease that risk."

According to the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, the ACL, which is one of four ligaments that connect the bones in the knee, is the most commonly injured ligament. Injury typically occurs when the ACL is overstretched or torn. Approximately half of ACL injuries will cause damage to other areas of the knee, including the meniscus, a wedge-shaped piece of cartilage that acts as a shock absorber for the knee joints.
Effects of an ACL injury
  • 50% cause damage to other parts of the knee
  • Increases the risk of developing specific types of knee osteoarthritis
  • Surgery does not decrease risk of osteoarthritis
  • Surgical treatment is usually advised to repair these injuries.

    Knee osteoarthritis is a common public health problem affecting more than nine million Americans. It typically develops gradually over several years. Knee osteoarthritis symptoms can include pain, stiffness, swelling and reduction in knee mobility.

    For the study, researchers gathered information from the database of a previous multicenter study of 855 patients. The earlier study was conducted from 1996 to 1997 to evaluate the diagnostic value of knee MRI relative to arthroscopy in patients with knee pain.

    In the current study, Dr. Huétink and colleagues followed up with 326 of the original 855 patients. All 326 patients had experienced knee pain for four weeks or more prior to the initial MRI and treatment. Initial findings and differences in treatment were compared with current follow-up x-rays and MRI exams.

    The results showed that patients with ACL and meniscus tears are at a greater risk for developing osteoarthritis. Meniscectomy, which is the surgical removal of all or part of a torn meniscus, did not reduce that risk.

    According to Dr. Huétink, the long-term and short-term clinical benefits of partial meniscectomy vs. meniscal repair procedures need to be further investigated.

    "There is a higher risk of developing knee osteoarthritis at specific sites after tearing a meniscus or cruciate ligament," Dr. Huétink said. "We showed a direct relationship between injury and long-term consequences, and showed that surgery has no impact on long-term outcomes."

    Discuss in the Knee1 forums

    Photo: Frank Kovalchek

    Previous Stories

    Hip exercises found effective at reducing, eliminating common knee pain in runners

    Those Who Exercise When Young Have Stronger Bones When They Grow Old

    New Topical Cream Brings Relief to Osteoarthritis Patients

    more Feature Stories


    RSS

    KNEE REPLACEMENT SURGERY COST IN INDIA
    By lyfboat
    more more Blogs RSS

    DR Dunn and IAGH
    By tblair

    Posted: May 23, 2017
     I understand DR Dunn has retired from medicine..Does anyone know of any other doctor who is doing IAGH injections ?

    more more Forums Create a Topic

    Chronic Rheumatoid Arthritis in the Knee
    Rheumatoid arthritis can cause joint swelling, stiffness, pain, and inflammation. ...
    more more Featured Videos

     
    Dr. Robert Klapper

    Dr. Robert Klapper:

    Preventing Knee Surgery
      more
      more Heroes
      nominate a Hero
      Hero policy