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AAOS Issues New Clinical Practice Guideline for Osteoarthritis of the Knee
Date:12/11/2008

ROSEMONT, Ill. , Dec. 11 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) has approved and released an evidence-based clinical practice guideline on "Treatment of Osteoarthritis of the Knee". These guidelines were explicitly developed to include only treatments which are less invasive than knee replacement surgery. While a wide range of treatment options are available, they should always be tailored to individual patients after discussions with their physicians.

The Guidelines and Evidence Report recommends:

  • Not performing an arthroscopic lavage if a patient only displays symptoms of osteoarthritis and no other problems like loose bodies or meniscus tears.

If those mechanical problems--such as loose bodies and meniscal tears - are present then arthroscopy can be potentially beneficial. "The current science shows us that just washing out the joint does not decrease the patient's osteoarthritis symptoms and can expose the patient to additional risk," said John Richmond, MD, Chair of the AAOS work group.

Other important recommendations include:

  • Patients who are overweight, with a Body Mass Index (or BMI) greater than 25 should lose a minimum of five per cent of their body weight.
  • Patients should be encouraged to begin or increase their participation in low-impact aerobic fitness.

"These two recommendations are very important because patients can self manage the progression of their OA, and take more control of what their issues are," said Dr. Richmond. "As far as losing weight, this has the highest potential to actually slow the progression of the disease."

After a thorough analysis of the current scientific literature, the work group recommends against using
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SOURCE American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
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