Follow-Up Study Supports Biologic Joint Reconstruction Rather Than
Artificial Total Knee Replacement
SAN FRANCISCO, March 6 /PRNewswire/ -- In a report to the meeting of the Meniscus Transplantation Study Group, presented during the 2008 meeting of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, Kevin R. Stone, M.D., of the Stone Research Foundation, San Francisco, presented an update on the outcome of 137 patients with arthritis who have undergone allograft replacement procedures of the meniscus since 1997.
In the follow-up study of objective clinical evaluation and imaging of the knee and the patients' subjective evaluation, 111 patients experienced successful outcomes after periods ranging from three months to 10.5 years. The failure rate was 19% with a mean time to failure of 4.79 years.
The allograft replacement procedure replaces the meniscus with a donor allograft. The procedure, which is used to protect the articular cartilage and/or reduce pain, is performed on an outpatient basis and is done arthroscopically and is, therefore, minimally invasive.
"The importance of this study," according to Dr. Stone, "is that it documents that meniscus replacement is an excellent option for some patients facing artificial total knee replacement. It can reduce patient pain and also delay the necessity for total replacement."
"The study also showed," he said, "that meniscal allograft transplantation is a viable treatment option for arthritic patients of all ages."
Among the unexpected study results was the variation in the objective and subjective evaluations of the procedure's success. In some cases, patients reported reduced or no pain when the objective evaluation and imaging seemed to indicate significant arthritis.
"Thus, subjective patient outcomes are critical in evaluating the success of the procedure," said Dr. Stone.
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