History of acute knee injury and osteoarthritis of the knee: a prospective epidemiological assessment. The Clearwater Osteoarthritis Study

Osteoarthritis Cartilage. 2002 Aug;10(8):611-6. doi: 10.1053/joca.2002.0795.


Objective: To evaluate the association between acute joint injury to the knee and knee osteoarthritis (OA).

Design: Prospective cohort. Sample size = 1,436. Men and women aged 40 years and older participating in the population-based Clearwater Osteoarthritis Study (1988-current) with biennial physical exams including serial radiographs. Radiologically confirmed knee OA = 27%; self-reported knee injury = 11%. Lawrence and Kellgren ordinal scale was used to determine radiological evidence of the study outcome, knee OA. Self-reported history of knee injury was used to determine the study exposure.

Results: Individuals with a history of knee injury were 7.4 (95% C.I. 5.9-9.4) times as likely to develop knee OA than were those individuals who did not have a history of knee injury.

Conclusion: Acute knee joint injury appears to be a risk factor for the development of knee OA. Prevention strategies for OA should be targeted to those individuals with a history of acute knee injury.

MeSH terms

  • Acute Disease
  • Adult
  • Aged
  • Body Mass Index
  • Cohort Studies
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Knee Injuries / complications*
  • Knee Injuries / diagnostic imaging
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Osteoarthritis, Knee / diagnostic imaging
  • Osteoarthritis, Knee / etiology*
  • Prospective Studies
  • Radiography
  • Risk Factors
  • Sex Factors
  • Smoking