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Home Industry News Knee surgery ‘should not be recommended for degenerative knee damage’

Knee surgery ‘should not be recommended for degenerative knee damage’

11th May 2017

International experts have issued a recommendation that arthroscopic surgery be phased out as an approach for treating degenerative knee disease.

In a new Rapid Recommendation published in the British Medical Journal, the team – led by Reed Siemieniuk of McMaster University in Canada – have argued that keyhole surgery to relieve pain and improve movement offers no benefit for the vast majority of these patients.

Assessing pre-existing literature alongside a review of patient preferences, it was shown that arthroscopic knee surgery does not on average result in any lasting improvement in pain or function in almost all patients with degenerative knee damage.

Additionally, surgery can create significant burdens on the patient due to the lengthy recovery times and risk of complications, as well as being a poor use of health service resources.

Many existing guidelines continue to recommend knee surgery for certain cases of degenerative knee disease, but the expert panel said there is little evidence to support any of the supposed benefits.

The report concluded: "We make a strong recommendation against the use of arthroscopy in nearly all patients with degenerative knee disease, based on linked systematic reviews; further research is unlikely to alter this recommendation."

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