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Knee replacement surgery incidence soars in those over age 50
Date:1/17/2012

Researchers in Finland found that annual cumulative incidences of partial and total knee arthroplasty, commonly known as knee replacement surgery, rose rapidly over a 27-year period among 30 to 59 year-olds in that country, with the greatest increase occurring in patients aged 50 to 59 years. According to the study published today in Arthritis & Rheumatism, a peer-reviewed journal of the American College of Rheumatology (ACR), incidences were higher in women throughout the study period.

Osteoarthritis (OA) is a highly disabling joint disease that according to a 2002 report by the World Health Organization (WHO) is the fourth leading cause of years lived with disability worldwide. In the U.S., experts say more than 10 million adults are affected by OA and for those with advanced disease arthroplasty may be the only treatment option to relieve the disabling pain and stiffness, and improve quality of life. In fact, the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality reports that over 600,000 total knee replacements were performed in the U.S. in 2009 and a previous study estimates that number could grow by 673% to 3.48 million procedures by the year 2030.

"OA risk is shown to increase with age and for severe knee OA arthroplasty is a commonly used treatment option when patients are unresponsive to more conservative therapies," said Dr. Jarkko Leskinen, an orthopedic surgeon at Helsinki University Central Hospital in Finland and lead author of the current study. "Despite the more frequent use of replacement surgery, very few data are published on knee arthroplasty incidence and its effects in younger populations." To advance understanding of this issue, researchers obtained data collected by the Finnish Arthroplasty Registry of all unicondylar (partial) and total knee replacements performed between 1980 and 2006. The team analyzed the effects of gender, age group and hospital volume on incidence rates of arthroplasty for knee OA.

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Contact: Dawn Peters
healthnews@wiley.com
781-388-8408
Wiley-Blackwell
Source:Eurekalert

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