Doubtful surgical arthroscopic surgery does not help with arthritis in the knee
An international body of surgeons and patients has examined the effectiveness of one of the most common orthopedic procedures. The experts found that the use of arthroscopic surgery in patients with degenerative knee problems does not provide lasting pain relief or improvement.
An international team of scientists found in his study that the use of arthroscopic surgery in patients with degenerative knee problems does not really lead to an improvement. The physicians published the results of their analysis of various studies in the journal British Medical Journal (BMJ).Often physicians try to perform a surgical procedure in people with degenerative knee problems in order to allow those affected a relief of the pain. Researchers have now found that such surgery is ineffective in most patients.
Surgery does not lead to permanent pain relief
For their study, the experts analyzed the results of 13 studies involving almost 1,700 patients. They found that the surgery does not cause permanent pain relief or improvement in function for most sufferers. The studies studied compared the effects of surgery with a variety of options, including physiotherapy, exercise and even placebo surgery, the researchers explain.
Pain relief was not available after one year
Fewer than 15 percent of patients felt an improvement in pain and knee function three months after the procedure, say the physicians. However, this effect was no longer present after about a year, the researchers explain. In addition, the use of surgery in patients can lead to rare but dangerous damage such as infections, the experts add.
What happens in arthroscopic knee surgery??
In arthroscopic knee surgery, doctors make several small cuts around the joint. Then they use a tiny camera to look in the knee and fix problems identified with the help of small instruments. Often the surgery is performed to remove part of a damaged meniscus, say the scientists. Around the world, this form of surgery is performed more than two million times a year. In the United States alone, these operations cost more than $ 3 billion annually.
Many organizations make recommendations against arthroscopy in patients with arthritis
The panel's recommendations are in line with guidelines from a number of medical groups. Most of these organizations have issued recommendations against arthroscopy for patients with arthritis, if the arthritis can be detected by an X-ray, the authors explain.
exceptions prove the rule
The guidelines of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons recommends that patients with arthritis do not perform such a form of treatment. This recommendation is also confirmed by the new study. However, the generalization of a large number of randomized studies does not necessarily take into account the circumstances of individual patients, the experts warn. The guidelines do not apply to every patient. There will always be exceptions.
Pain relief through surgery is just too low
The frustration of some people on the results of the study is understandable, especially if those affected in the operation have seen a way to improve their health problems, said the lead author Reed Siemieniuk. Despite positive personal experiences, the evidence suggests that the results may not be as good for the patients, the expert adds. Reading the studies examined showed that the pain relief obtained is too low to be considered relevant.
Operation not more effective than exercises for the pain
The evaluation of the studies in the BMJ is the latest in a series of studies that have raised concerns about this form of surgery. The magazine already published in 2015 a study by researchers from Denmark. At that time, it showed that arthroscopic repair of the meniscus is not much more effective for middle-aged people than various exercises to alleviate the pain. In addition, there is a risk of debilitating side effects from the surgery. (As)