Role of arthroscopy in osteoarthritis of the knee joint


  • Kiran Gaonkar Department of Orthopaedics, Krishna Institute of Medical Sciences, Karad, Maharashtra, India
  • Nishant Gaonkar
  • Ketan Gupta Department of Orthopaedics, Krishna Institute of Medical Sciences, Karad, Maharashtra, India
  • Nirav Patel
  • Himanshu Kulkarni



Arthroscopy, Osteoarthritis of the knee joint


Background: Degenerative changes in the knee occur with increasing frequency after the third decade of life. In early osteoarthritis with no mal-alignment of the knee, arthroscopic surgery is an attractive alternative for many elderly patients as it reduces the degree of surgical insult and postoperative rehabilitation with hope of restoration of painless mobility. To study the role of arthroscopic debridement in alleviation of pain in cases of osteoarthritis knee and to evaluate the effectiveness of arthroscopy in diagnosis of osteoarthritis knee and its co-relation with radiological diagnosis.

Methods: The present study is cross-sectional study of consecutive cohort of 53 patients. Body mass index was calculated based on height and weight of the patients and from their assessment of X - Rays patients were graded from 0 to 4 based on Kellegren–Lawrence radiological grading method. Selected patient were then assessed by pain domain of the knee society scoring system, which is joint specific score ranging from 0 to 50. These patients were then subjected to arthroscopic examination and debridement.

Results:  Overall 17 (32.08%) out of total 53 cases studied showed improvement after one year. Majority of patients improved were grade 2 (57.89%) but none of the grade 4 patients showed improvement at 1 year.

Conclusions: Arthroscopic debridement does not influence the ongoing pathological process; it is only useful for symptomatic relief in cases of low grade osteoarthritis where it provides pain relief. Conversely, in patient with sever osteoarthritis there is very limited role of arthroscopy.


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