Objective: To assess the influence of pre-operative X-ray changes on the response to total knee joint replacement (TKR).
Methods: We included patients from one centre who underwent primary TKR (n = 478) for osteoarthritis in 2006 and 2007. The International Knee Society score (IKSS) and short form health survey were collected pre-operatively and at 1 and 2 years after surgery. Pre-operative radiographs were read to assess Kellgren and Lawrence (K-L) grading, individual radiographic features using the OARSI atlas, and subchondral bone attrition using the Ahlbach method. The main independent variable was a modified (K-L) grade. The outcome variables were the IKSS pain and function scores. Covariates included demographic features, co-morbidities, baseline pain and function, prosthesis type, and the use of patella resurfacing. Multivariable linear regression models were created to assess the relationships between pre-operative X-ray findings and pain and function outcomes.
Results: On average, pain and function improved greatly following surgery. However, pain relief was unsatisfactory in about 30%, and functional improvement suboptimal in about 50%. OR (95% CI) for ongoing moderate-severe pain at 12 months for modified K-L grades; <3: 5.39 (1.23-15.69), 3a: 2.62 (1.21-5.67), 3b: 1.81 (1.00-3.26), 4a: 2.06 (1.05-4.05) when compared to 4b. OR (95% CI) for poor function at 12 months were; 3a: 2.81 (1.23-6.39) and 4a: 2.45 (1.22-4.91), when compared to 4b.
Conclusions: Patients with more severe radiographic knee damage at the time of surgery are most likely to have substantial gains in terms of both pain relief and improved function as a result of a TKR.
Copyright © 2012 Osteoarthritis Research Society International. Published by Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.