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Articular Cartilage Changes in Patients With Osteoarthritis After... » Isaúde
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American Journal of Sports Medicine
2011-05-05 23:07:21

Articular Cartilage Changes in Patients With Osteoarthritis After Osteotomy

Subject: Imaging Studies, Chondral/cartilage, Knee, Operative

Description: Background: High tibial osteotomy (HTO) is a method used to treat medial compartmental osteoarthritis in the knee. The realignment of the knee changes the loading patterns within the joint and may allow for regeneration of articular cartilage. Magnetic resonance imaging methods can be used to assess the quality of the regenerated cartilage. Hypothesis: Altering mechanical alignment through HTO will have predictable effects on articular cartilage, allowing cartilage preservation and possible regeneration. Quality of regenerated cartilage will be inferior to normal articular cartilage. Study Design: Case series; Level of evidence, 4. Methods: Ten patients undergoing medial opening wedge HTO were evaluated using dGEMRIC methods (ie, delayed gadolinium-enhanced magnetic resonance imaging of cartilage) preoperatively and at 6 months, 1 year, and 2 years after HTO. Magnetic resonance images were evaluated by hand segmentation, and T1Gd relaxation times reflective of glycosaminoglycan content were determined for these regions of interest using magnetic resonance imaging analysis software. Results: The lateral compartment displayed higher T1Gd values than the medial compartment at baseline. Initially, a decrease in T1Gd values on the medial side were observed for all patients at 6 months and remained reduced for all but 2 participants at 1 year and 2 years after HTO. However, on the medial side after 6 months, the rate of change for T1Gd values shifted from being negative (–9.6 milliseconds per month) to being positive (1.7 milliseconds per month). A positive change in the T1Gd of the medial tibial plateau was responsible for the positive overall change in the medial compartment. There was no significant difference in the rate of change on the lateral side (P = .141), with the average over the 2-year period being a decrease of 2.28 milliseconds per month. Conclusion: Medial opening wedge HTO provides subjective improvements in pain and quality of life, but the potential benefit of allowing articular cartilage preservation and possible regeneration is not well established. Results showed that after a nonweightbearing period, the rate of change in the medial compartment changes from negative to positive, indicating the potential for articular cartilage recovery secondary to an improved mechanical environment.

Identifier: i
Editorial: American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine
Section: research-article
Number: 5
Volume: 39
Page: 1039 a 1045
Author: Parker, D. A., Beatty, K. T., Giuffre, B., Scholes, C. J., Coolican, M. R. J.


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