Knee OA Common in Younger People a Year After ACL Repair
Written by Editor   
Friday, April 10, 2015 12:00 AM

Almost one-third of young patients have evidence of osteoarthritis (OA) of the knee as defined by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) one year after anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction (ACLR), new research suggests.  Of 111 participants in a study who had undergone ACLR a year earlier nineteen-percent met the MRI criteria for tibiofemoral OA while another seventeen-percent met the MRI criteria for patellofemoral OA.  Together, this meant thirty-one percent of participants had MRI-defined knee OA overall one year after ACLR.

In contrast, among uninjured controls, none had MRI-defined patellofemoral or tibiofemoral OA.  "And our data extend those of recent MRI studies that suggest ACLR does not restore a knee to normal," the authors wrote.

"In young adults one year after an ACLR, we report a higher prevalence of MRI-diagnosed OA than has previously been recognized," the authors note.  "And the current study provides evidence of the considerable extent of joint disease evident one year after ACLR [which] challenges existing dogma that degenerative joint disease does not become apparent for years post-ACLR."