Knee Osteoarthritis Symptoms Common After ACL Reconstruction

Young patients experienced persistent knee OA symptoms in the six to 12 months following surgery
Knee Osteoarthritis Symptoms Common After ACL Reconstruction
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TUESDAY, April 23, 2024 (HealthDay News) -- Nearly one-quarter of patients show persistent early knee osteoarthritis (OA) symptoms six to 12 months after anterior cruciate ligament reconstruction (ACLR), according to a study recently published in the Journal of Athletic Training.

Matthew S. Harkey, Ph.D., from Michigan State University in East Lansing, and colleagues evaluated the change over time in meeting classification criteria for early knee OA symptoms from six to 12 months following ACLR. The analysis included 82 participants (aged 13 to 35 years) who underwent unilateral primary ACLR.

The researchers found that 22 percent of participants showed persistent early OA symptoms across both follow-up visits, as measured by both the Luyten original and patient population-specific criteria. Resolution of early OA symptoms occurred among 18 to 27 percent of patients from initial to follow-up visit, while 4 to 9 percent developed incident symptoms. Roughly half of patients (48 to 51 percent) had no early OA symptoms at either visit. Change in early OA status was similar between adults and adolescents.

"We see fairly young, active individuals experiencing extensive symptoms, but these symptoms are not interpreted by clinicians as something that may be related to osteoarthritis," Harkey said in a statement. "Ignoring these symptoms might be setting them up to experience long-term decline and function."

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